QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Daniella Rodriguez, will you marry me?”
—Astros shortstop Carlos Correa to his girlfriend, Miss Texas USA Daniella Rodriguez, on live television, after the team won the World Series, according to the Houston Chronicle. She said yes.
The Houston Astros won the World Series on Wednesday, beating the Los Angeles Dodgers in a thrilling seven-game series. The 5-1 win in game seven in L.A. gave the Astros the first-ever World Series title in the franchise’s 56-year history. On Wednesday night, Houston jumped out to a 5-0 lead and never looked back. George Springer scored on a throwing error and Jose Altuve batted in Alex Bregman in the first inning. Starting pitcher Lance McCullers Jr. plated Brian McCann in the second, and in the next at-bat George Springer hit a two-run homer. Dodgers starter Yu Darvish was out of the game after managing to retire just five Astros batters, giving up four runs—Houston couldn’t get anything going against the pitchers brought in by the Dodgers in relief, including staff ace Clayton Kershaw, who threw four scoreless innings. But the damage had already been done, and the Astros pitchers kept the team in control. McCullers Jr. threw three and one-third shutout innings, striking out three. Brad Peacock threw two scoreless innings, and Francisco Liriano and Chad Devenski each retired the only batter they were brought in to face. Charlie Morton pitched the final four innings, holding the Dodgers to one run. Jose Altuve made the final out for the Astros, cleanly fielding a grounder at second before tossing the ball over to first base. “I caught the last out for the Houston Astros to become a world champion,” a giddy Altuve said after the game. “It was a groundball to me, I threw to first, and I think it was the happiest moment of my life in baseball.” Springer, who hit a World Series record-tying five home runs, was named World Series MVP. “This is a dream come true and an honor,” Springer said after the game. “But it’s about the Houston Astros tonight, our city, our fans. That patch on our chests really does mean something. We’re coming home champions.”
MEANWHILE, IN TEXAS
Nine weeks ago, Houston was devastated by Hurricane Harvey. Now, the city can celebrate a World Series championship. Wearing a “Houston Strong” jersey patch, the Astros played this postseason with an entire city’s hopes on their backs (not to mention the 54-year World Series drought). “This team loves playing in Houston,” Astros manager A.J. Hinch said after the game, according to the Houston Chronicle. “And we’re going to love bringing this World Series trophy back to Houston.” Back home, fans packed Minute Maid Park to watch the game, and streets downtown erupted in celebration after the final out. Elsewhere, fans victimized by flooding took part in the celebration, too, however they could. “They listened on radios because Harvey destroyed their televisions,” wrote The New York Times. “They watched in gutted rooms missing walls and carpets because Harvey took their walls, carpets and everything else. They watched upstairs because the downstairs was still being repaired. They watched in motel rooms because Harvey made them refugees in their own city.” One fan watching at home celebrated just like the players were, spraying Budweiser in the air “until the cardboard covering the windows got wet, not too far from where he had carried an elderly neighbor on his back through chest-high floodwaters,” according to the Times. “You can see it in their eyes,” that fan, 32-year-old Waylon Doucett, told the Times of the Astros players. “They know the devastation. They know what we’re going through down here. Of all times, what better time to win the World Series than right now.”
While the Astros’ World Series win was a storybook-perfect ending, it hardly came as a surprise to Astros management, who had revitalized the team in the past several years in a textbook rebuild project. The rise was predicted, too, by Sports Illustrated, which famously proclaimed on the cover of a June 2014 issue that the Astros would win the World Series in 2017. At the time, it seemed no more than a pipe dream. They had suffered through three straight seasons of one hundred or more losses, and were in the midst of another lost season, dropping 92 games in 2014. But they had a good young core, including Altuve, Carlos Correa, ace pitcher Dallas Keuchel, and Springer, and made the playoffs the following year. After a decent season in 2016 in which the team fell just short of the playoffs, everything came together for the team this season, as predicted by Sports Illustrated. The cover even got the star of the show correct, featuring Springer, who was named the World Series MVP. Sports Illustrated followed up on its prediction last week with a look back at how the cover story came to be. “We had some rough years but we stuck to our plan,” Astros General Manager Jeff Luhnow said after the game, according to the Houston Chronicle. “We knew we had a plan that could get us here and we got it.”
WHAT WE’RE READING
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You can buy that psychic Sports Illustrated cover Sports Illustrated
The Astros’ World Series victory parade will be at 2 p.m. on Friday in downtown Houston Houston Chronicle
Scenes from the champagne party in the Astros’s locker room Houston Chronicle
This Astros fan maxed out his credit cards to attend all seven games of the World Series Houston Chronicle
Mattress Mack will give away $10 million in rebates after the World Series win ESPN