Sports

With a 3-2 lead at Minute Maid Park, the Astros have been there before

HOUSTON – The Astros have been there and they know the difficulty of winning the last game, the championship game in a World Series.

The Houston Astros will try to defeat the Philadelphia Phillies for the third consecutive game to win the second World Series title in franchise history.

As has happened before, the Astros come into Game 6 of the Fall Classic with a 3-2 lead, and they will have two chances to win the game that remains to be crowned at their own Minute Maid Park, as happened in 2019 when they were unable to win a home game to win the World Series ring.

“I think we learned a lot from that occasion so that it doesn’t happen again,” outfielder Yordan Alvarez said after the 3-2 victory in Game 5. “We have to go home focused, to prepare ourselves in all aspects to finish with this as fast as they can. We don’t want a Game 7. Now the pressure is on them and we just have to go out and play.”

Three years ago, the Astros returned to their Minute Maid Park with a similar lead to this time, 3-2, although without winning either of the first two home games. The situation ended the same, they could not succeed in those last two home games and lost the opportunity to add the second crown in franchise history.

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The Dominican will be in charge of opening Game 6 of the World Series for the Astros, and stated that he does not intend to change anything in his routine to seek victory.

This time it is the third attempt in four years to win it all for the second time, after they were champions in 2017, then they were crowned at Dodger Stadium.

“It would be nice to bring joy to all those fans, a championship,” first baseman Yuli Gurriel said. “They have always supported us, through thick and thin.”

Receiver Martín Maldonado was also part of that Astros team that returned to Houston after winning three games in a row in Washington and could not get the final.

“We are happy and motivated,” Maldonado said. “We’ll have Framber Valdez. He’s been one of the best pitchers for us. We’re focused. We have to keep thinking one game at a time, one pitch at a time and go out and do the same thing we’ve done these two games.” .

The Astros pitched a no-hitter in Game 4 combined between four pitchers, led by starter Christian Javier.

In the fifth of the series, Justin Verlander had a shaky start, but was able to get out without major damage in the tight moments. And the batting support at opportune moments with the runs.

As has been the common denominator throughout the series and the entire postseason, the defense and especially the relief, finished the job in Philadelphia.

“We bring the momentum, but that can change fast,” Astros manager Dusty Baker said. “It’s about learning from previous lessons, being positive and bringing that to our park.”

“I heard that the city of Houston exploded last night with McCormick’s (Chas, center fielder) catch,” he added. “But you have to be focused on all aspects.”

This is the third time the Astros have led a World Series 3-2. They previously lost Games 6 and 7 against the Nationals in 2019 and beat the Los Angeles Dodgers in seven games in 2017.

“I’m glad we got a day off today instead of trying five days in a row. We’re going to go home this afternoon (Friday), have a nice meal and tomorrow we’re going to be ready to play,” Baker concluded.

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