HOUSTON — You know those Houston Astros bats that came alive at the end of Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday night? They’re still very much alive.
The Astros pounded Yu Darvish, the Los Angeles Dodgers starter in Game 3 on Friday night, who couldn’t even make it out of the second inning before manager Dave Roberts had to go to his bullpen. Darvish against the Astros lineup in Minute Maid Park looked like Apollo Creed fighting Ivan Drago. The hits just kept coming. And eventually, the Astros left with a 5-3 win to take a 2-1 lead in the series.
Houston scored four runs in the second inning — three of them before Darvish was even able to record an out. That included an inning-starting homer by Yuli Gurriel that was followed by a Josh Reddick double and an Evan Gattis walk. Then came back-to-back RBI singles by Marwin Gonzalez and Brian McCann. The fourth run came when Alex Bregman hit a sac fly. Jose Altuve followed with a double into left field and that’s when Roberts called Kenta Maeda from the bullpen.
The final line for Darvish was rough: 1 2/3 innings, six hits, four earned runs, one walk and no strikeouts. It was the shortest outing of Darvish’s MLB career. But this factoid from Jake Kaplan of the Houston Chronicle might be the biggest indication that Darvish just didn’t have it Friday night:
Yu Darvish threw 49 pitches. He got one swing and miss.
— Jake Kaplan (@jakemkaplan) October 28, 2017
Ugh, that’s not great at all — particularly for Darvish, who often relies on strikeouts and keeping hitters off balance with his arsenal of pitches.
On the Astros’ side of things, they showed once again how dangerous their offense can be, especially at home. Coming into Game 3, the Astros were undefeated at home in the postseason and had outscored opponents a staggering 31-7.
The Dodgers learned that first-hand, and quickly.
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