Game 1 of the World Series started with a bang as the Atlanta Braves Jorge Soler smashed a home; a first for any lead-off batter in the championship.
The Houston Astros hosted Tuesday in their third appearance in the World Series in the last five years at Minute Maid Park. They hope to validate their 2017 victory over the L.A. Dodgers. Their championship win was tarnished when MLB confirmed that they used technology to steal their opponents’ signs, and relay them to their batters. This year, MLB was fully prepared to be onsight and prevent any potential scandal.
However, the Braves brought the attack to the Astros early through the first three innings, scoring 5 runs.
Following Soler’s home run in the first inning, Ozzie Albies hit an infield single off of Astros pitcher Framber Valdez. Austin Riley then doubled to deep center, scoring Albies for a 2–0 lead.
Another run was added in the second inning after catcher Travis d’Arnaud singled, and was brought home on a fielder’s choice from Soler’s grounder.
The third inning would add two more runs as Adam Duvall hit a home run of 387 feet to left field, which also scored Eddie Rosario.
Houston would get on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fourth inning after Kyle Tucker’s double and Yuli Gurriel’s single; Chas McCormick then hit a ground out into a fielder’s choice to shortstop, which brought Tucker home.
Additional runs were added in the eighth inning by Atlanta from a sacrifice fly by Freddie Freeman that sent Dansby Swanson in for their sixth run. The Astros would counter with designated hitter Yordan Alvarez smashing a triple into the wall at center field. Carlos Correa would aid Alvarez to score by grounding out to second base. However, it was not nearly enough as the final score ended with Braves dominating, 6–2.
The big storyline in the game was Atlanta’s starting ace pitcher Charlie Morton. He pitched a scoreless 3 1/3 innings before his fibula gave out on a strikeout pitch to the Astros Jose Altuve. Morton was hit just above the ankle in the second inning from a Gurriel grounder. Morton was x-rayed negative after the hitless inning. Incredibly, he persevered the pain and continued to pitch until his right fibula fractured in the third inning. Morton would be very apologetic to his teammates and staff that he was not able to contribute more. Obviously, Morton will be out with injury for the remainder of the Series.
Braves manager, Brian Snitker said of Morton, “He’s such a great person; great person and teammate. I really hate it for him because I know he’s really looking forward to this run with us. So we’ll move on.”
Reliever A.J. Minter came in to cover for Morton’s premature exit. Minter was able to pitch three innings, throwing 43 pitches, while giving up just one run.
Following the game, Minter said to FOX, “I knew I had to cover some innings with Charlie going down. I just want to help the bullpen out as much as I could. And I couldn’t imagine if you’d asked me this back in June when I was down in triple-A, that I would be throwing two, three innings in Game 1 of the World Series, it’ll be very hard to believe. So truly special.”
Morton started his career with the Braves in 2008, before becoming a fixture in Pittsburgh from 2009–2015. He also spent time with Tampa Bay and Philadelphia. The irony is that Morton was part of the World Series-winning 2017 squad with the Houston Astros.
Albies added about Morton, “He’s out. He’s one of the best pitchers we have … but I mean, we gonna go play out there and we got to have his back for him. We have to go and just do what we do every day. He’s done but somebody else has to pick him up. The whole team has to just go and get the job done.”