The MLB season is one step closer to seeing the World Series championship after some thought baseball might not happen at all this year because of COVID-19. The season may have been shortened because of the global pandemic, but at least there’s been some action to enjoy. The National League (NL) and the American League (AL) are close to determining who will take their respective Championship Series (CS), and at least one of the two could be decided today.
In the NLCS, the LA Dodgers are taking on the Atlanta Braves, but aren’t able to find a lot of success. They’re down 3-1 in the best-of-seven series, and the Braves could send the Dodgers packing if they win today. The Dodgers gave a great performance in Game 3 to stay in the running, but couldn’t keep it up in Game 4 yesterday. The Braves showed that the 11-run grab by the Dodgers in the previous game was a fluke.
In Game 3, the Dodgers won 15-3; however, the Braves flipped that upside down with a 10-2 victory last night. Marcell Ozuna picked up two home runs and drove in four runs, and potential MVP Freddie Freeman pushed the Braves ahead with a tiebreaking double. Righty Bryse Wilson, on the mound for the first time in a postseason game, had an outstanding night, stopping almost everyone who stepped up to the plate for the Dodgers. Atlanta can taste the victory and, with three games still on tap, it only needs to win one of them to advance to the World Series.
Things are a little tighter in the ALCS, where the Houston Astros are giving the Tampa Bay Rays trouble. They Rays started the series on the road to a 4-0 shutout, but faltered in Game 4 to give the Astros their first victory of the series. Houston kept the pressure on by adding another win in Game 5 last night, making this a 3-2 series. It isn’t clear if the Astros are pulling out some old tricks from their bag to cause the Rays so much grief.
Yesterday’s game could have been taken by the Rays. The score was tied 3-3 in the ninth inning when Carlos Correa gave the Astros the break they were looking for. He hit a walk-off homer off Nick Anderson – his sixth walk-off homer in this postseason – to put the Astros up by one and give them the win. Correa, who has been with Houston since entering MLB in 2015, has 17 postseason home runs to his credit across 61 games. Because of his score, the Astros have become just the fourth team in MLB history to push a playoff series to Game 6 – the last time was in 2004.
The ALCS and NCLS will be back today for their next games. While the Braves have a chance to lock this up and get a little rest before the World Series, the Rays need to toughen up and figure out how to keep the Astros from picking up another win. Almost the entire baseball community is rooting for the Rays.