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Braves win first World Series since 1995

TUES. | 11-23-21 | SPORTS

     The 2021 World Series began on Tuesday, Oct. 26 between the Houston Astros and the Atlanta Braves. The Astros finished the regular season with a record of 95-67 and the Atlanta Braves finished 88-73. Both of these teams have had successful seasons and achieved a lot.

     The regular season champions from the American League West

Houston Astros vs Atlanta Braves.png

Graphic by Jay Tyndall

were guaranteed a spot in the playoffs. The Astros beat the White Sox in the division series with a 3-1 split. They brought this confidence to the American League Championship Series against the Boston Red Sox, and won the American League pennant with a series of 4-2. This guaranteed them a spot to play in the 2021 World Series. 

     The Braves also came in first place in their division, which guaranteed them a spot in the playoffs. They started off playing the Milwaukee Brewers in the division series and won 3-1. They went on to win the National League pennant against the Los Angeles Dodgers in a series 4-2. This led them to the World Series, where they would face the Astros.

     In game one, the Braves took the lead early on with a solo home run from outfielder Jorge Soler and a run-batted-in (RBI) double from Austin Riley. On the other hand, the Astros left the bases stranded early which led the momentum towards the Braves offense. Adam Duvall homered for the Braves in the top of the third to take a lead of 5-0. In the bottom of the fourth, the Astros got on the board with a leadoff double from Kyle Tucker and an RBI from Chas McCormick. The Braves ended up holding the Astros with an outstanding performance of the bullpen resulting in a score of 6-2. 

     In game two, the Astros flipped the script leading off the first inning with a pair of hits and RBIs from Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman. This gave José Urquidy some momentum, striking out a couple pairs of Braves hitters. This momentum stayed with the Astros until D'arnaud hit a solo home run in the top of the second which gave the Braves some energy. The Astros continued to make it a game, scoring three runs in the bottom of the second, from an RBI double by Martín Maldonado. The Braves could not find a spark offensively and this led to some errors in the field and gave the Astros game two.

     The third game of this series took place in Atlanta, GA, the Braves hometown. The game started off slow with pitchers Ian Anderson and Luis Garcia dueling and escaping innings until a double off the wall from D'arnaud and an RBI double for Riley. Things continued to go in the right direction for the Braves with the bullpen coming in after five no-hit innings from Ian Anderson and allowing zero runs. This good defense allowed the Braves to capitalize late with a homer from D'arnaud and take game three.

     In game four, the Astros took the lead, as they loaded the bases with four walks and scored a run off an RBI fielder's choice. The Braves starter Dylan Lee who made his first career start in the World Series was pulled in the first inning before the Astros scored. The game stayed quiet after this until the top of the fourth from a solo home run from Altuve. The score remained 2-0 until the bottom of the sixth when Riley delivered an RBI base hit to score one run. This spark from the Braves offense continued into the bottom of the seventh where Dansby Swanson and  Soler both hit solo home runs to take the lead. This gave the Braves the momentum to hold the Astros and win game four. 

     In game five, the Braves started the game off with a grand slam from Duvall to take the lead early. However, the Astros got on the board in the second with an RBI double from Bregman and a sacrifice fly from Maldanano. Also Carlos Correa and Yuli Gurriel both had RBI hits in the top of the third to tie the game. In the bottom of the third, the Braves took the lead by a solo home run from Freeman. As the game progressed, the Astros took the lead with a bases loaded walk to bring in the tying run and a RBI base hit from Marwin Gonzalez. The Astros continued to succeed offensively and ended up winning game five 9-5. 

     In game six, the game began slowly with both pitchers dueling the first couple of innings. However, the excitement started in the top of the third inning with a base hit from Ozzie Albies and a three-run home run from Soler. This energy early from the Braves continued in the top of the fourth with a two-run home run from Swanson. The Atlanta Braves first baseman Freeman also contributed later on with an RBI double off the wall and a solo home run. The Braves held the Astros scoreless the whole game, and in addition to the highly performed offense, the Braves starting pitcher Max Fried pitched six scoreless innings and had the game of his career. The Atlanta Braves were named champions of the World Series in six games.

     This series among the Houston Astros and Atlanta Braves will be one to remember with many records that were broken in this six game series. Both of these teams had outstanding performances and entertained fans all over the world.

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