March 15, 2024

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No-hitter In The World Series Javier, Bullpen Shut Down Phils In Game 4

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No-hitter In The World Series Javier,

PHILADELPHIA — The Astros didn’t just change the course of this World Series after getting thrashed and facing the threat of something dangerously close to extinguishment. They made history.

The Astros silenced the potent Phillies lineup with the first combined no-hitter in World Series history in a 5-0 victory in Game 4 on Wednesday night at Citizens Bank Park, thanks to an outstanding performance from Cristian Javier and similarly outstanding work from the bullpen. The World Series is now tied, 2-2.

And in some ways, the prophecy was realized.

“It’s funny, my parents told me I was going to throw a no-hitter,” Javier said via an interpreter, “and thanks to God, I was able to accomplish that.”

The incredible feat, which started with Javier’s six solid frames and continued with hitless frames from Bryan Abreu, Rafael Montero, and Ryan Pressly, joined right-hander Don Larsen of the Yankees in 1956 to become the only no-hitters in World Series history. The only other postseason no-hitter was thrown by Hall of Famer Roy Halladay for the Phillies against the Reds in the 2010 National League Division Series in this very stadium.

“I think it’s the best fastball I’ve ever seen,” catcher Javier, according to Christian Vazquez. “That is how unique he is. You can make the call regardless of who is in the batter’s box, and it will be fantastic, efficient, and successful.”

The Phillies had the chance to take a 3-1 series lead that 85% of previous participants had converted into a victory by doing so. On the other hand, one night after they lit up Lance McCullers Jr. for a record five home runs, they had absolutely nothing to offer They were uncomfortable for six innings against Javier’s fastball-slider combination while only managing two walks.

This was the second time in 2022 that Javier started a combined no-hitter. At Yankee Stadium on June 25, Javier, Héctor Neris, and Pressly held the Yankees without a hit. The Phillies were also on the losing end of a combined no-no for the second time this season. Tylor Megill, Drew Smith, Joely Rodriguez, Seth Lugo, and Edwin Diaz of the Mets no-hit the Phillies on April 29 at Citi Field in a contest that also featured Aaron Nola, the starting pitcher for the Phillies in Game 4 of the World Series.

Another fun tidbit: Astros manager Dusty Baker has now been in the visitors’ dugout for two of the three postseason no-hitters. He was in charge of the Reds throughout Halladay’s 2010 no-no, including Wednesday night.

No-hitter In The World Series Javier,

“We had a fresh bullpen, our guys are throwing good down there and we figured that was enough, especially this late in the year,” said Baker, about taking Javier out of the game. “We didn’t want to start him in the following inning because we usually had him throw around 100 pitches. But that was one impressive way to win a game of baseball. The crowd was ecstatic; at least, our fans were. Nevertheless, it reminded me of the time Doc Halladay did no-hit us while I was living in Cincinnati. Apparently, it was meant to occur.”

The Astros were similarly silenced by Nola for four innings even though they were not in danger of being no-hit. However, in the fifth, Chas McCormick, Jose Altuve, and Jeremy Peña all hit consecutive singles, setting the stage for a dramatic sequence.

Rob Thomson, the manager of the Phillies, responded to the situation forcefully, as he has done throughout this Series. Thomson decided to use one of his highest-leverage relievers rather than ride his suddenly struggling co-ace Nola, who had only thrown 67 pitches. Alvarado pitched in the fifth for the second time in this Fall Classic, despite his assignments usually coming much later. It wasn’t impossible to enter with all the bases full, but it was a thankless task. It went absolutely horribly for Alvarado as well.

Alvarez scored the game’s first run when Alvarado’s first pitch hit him in the backside. A go-ahead run was scored on a hit-by-pitch with the bases loaded for the first time in a World Series game, and more significantly, the Astros’ 16-inning scoreless streak came to an end.

That got Houston going. Yuli Gurriel finished off the avalanche with a ground-ball single through the left side for another RBI, bringing the total to 5-0. Alex Bregman drove in two runs with a double to the opposite field in right field, Kyle Tucker added another with a sacrifice fly, and Yuli Bregman brought in a third with a sacrifice fly.

This was the fourth time this Series that a team went up 5-0 (or more) and the third time the Astros did it. As in Game 2, the lead stuck, thanks to Javier’s brilliant effort in which he mounted the first individual no-hit bid of at least six innings in the World Series since the Mets’ Jerry Koosman went six against the Orioles in Game 2 in 1969.

The Phillies’ once-dominant offense was still helpless even after Javier left the game after six innings and 97 pitches. In the seventh, Abreu continued to keep them without a hit. In the eighth, Montero performed similarly. Finally, Pressly shook up Citizens Bank Park in the ninth inning. For the first out, he got Brandon Marsh out by retiring him on a called strike three. Although Pressly persuaded Rhys Hoskins to fly out to the right and J.T. Realmuto to ground out to third to complete the feat.

Therefore, history was made on Wednesday rather than a potential coronation at home on Thursday. With Game 5 serving as a tiebreaker, Game 6 in Houston is now guaranteed for Saturday night.

Reference: https://www.mlb.com/news/astros-no-hit-phillies-in-world-series-game-4

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