One down, one to go. We’ve come to the end of one league championship, and the other teeters on the edge. By the end of the day, we may know who will play for the 2021 World Series.
What happened last night?
ALCS Game 6
Boston Red Sox, 0 Houston Astros 5
Houston advances to the World Series (4-2)
A pitcher stole all the headlines and gave his team everything he had, in a game where they needed every single bit of it, but it wasn’t the one we expected. Luis Garcia came into this game surrounded by question marks with his woes in this year’s postseason, and on the other side the Red Sox sent Nathan Eovaldi to the hill.
Eovaldi, in a vacuum, had a solid performance, especially coming off a relief appearance in between his rest days, throwing 4.1 innings and only giving up one run. However, on a night where the offense didn’t show up, that wasn’t enough.
The Red Sox couldn’t muster a single run against the surprisingly excellent pitching of Garcia. The right-hander gave up only a couple of runners in 5.1 innings with seven strikeouts.
Yordan Alvarez continued his absolutely monstrous series, going 4-4. His performance, which entailed a .521/.538/.869 slash line, earned him ALCS MVP honors.
Dusty Baker became the second manager in history to win a pennant in both leagues, and with a gap of eighteen years in between, nonetheless. The Astros now will rest at home during the weekend and wait for the finish of the NLCS.
What’s on deck?
NLCS Game 6
Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves
(Pitching: Walker Buehler vs. Ian Anderson)
Time: 8:08 PM EST
Venue: Truist Park
Is it déjà vu all over again in the National League? Can the Dodgers erase a 3-1 deficit against the Braves again?
The Braves return home where they haven’t lost yet in this postseason, up three games to two and needing only a single win to get to the World Series for the first time in the 21st century. The Dodgers are behind with no margin for error and a 1-3 record in postseason games on the road in 2021.
Only one time in the history of all four major American sports has a team came back from a 3-1 series deficit in back-to-back years, and New York fans are familiar with that one. The New York Rangers did it in 2014-15.
Max Scherzer was supposed to get the ball to try to force the series to Game 7, but he was scratched with a dead arm. The Dodgers are in a sticky spot now, down their ace and with few options. They could opt to start Walker Buehler on short rest, or go with a bullpen game. David Price and Tony Gonsolin will likely get long looks.
On the other side, Ian Anderson goes to try to close things out. Anderson didn’t look great in his previous start this series, but he’s coming off a strong season overall, one that included a 124 ERA+. He’s not a bad option for Atlanta to turn to with the stakes high.
Update: Buehler will get the ball on three days’ rest.
Walker Buehler will start Game 6 tonight.— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) October 23, 2021