Game Four of the World Series featured a no-hitter into the sixth inning. It featured the Astros taking the lead 1-0 lead and breaking up the no-no on a massive George Springer home run. Yet as feared, this game came down to the bullpen, and the Astros relievers were lacking. The game was tied 1-1 going to the ninth inning, only to have Astros closer Ken Giles blow a save again as the Dodgers scored five runs to take the 6-1 lead. The Astros struck back in the bottom of the ninth when Alex Bregman hit a home run (only the second Astros hit of the game) to make the final score 6-2.
JOC PEDERSON: The Dodgers had two men on with two men out in the top of the ninth inning. Los Angeles was clinging to a 3-1 lead thanks to another Ken Giles meltdown, but if the Astros could get one more out, there was still a chance, with George Springer and Alex Bregman set to bat, that the Astros could come back and win. Instead, Pederson unloaded on a pitch from Joe Musgrove and deposited it into the seats to give the Dodgers the 6-1 lead and to effectively end the game.
CODY BELLINGER: Bellinger was hitless for the World Series until Saturday night. He doubled in the seventh inning for his first hit, then scored on a Logan Forsythe single that tied the game. His ninth inning double scored Corey Seager, giving the Dodgers the 2-1 lead, then he came in to score on Pederson’s home run.
GEORGE SPRINGER: It was a tight, tense, scoreless pitching duel in the bottom of the sixth inning. Springer came to the plate with two outs and Dodger starter Alex Wood pitching a no-hitter. Springer ended that no-hitter in the most George Springer way possible, slamming a no-doubt-about-it home run to left field to give the Astros the lead and to drive Wood from the game. Springer also became the first player in MLB World Series history to break up a no-hitter with a home run in the sixth inning or later.
ALEX WOOD/CHARLIE MORTON: The latest Ken Giles meltdown should not subtract from either starting pitcher. Wood was pitching a no-hitter into the sixth inning before surrendering the home run to Springer. Wood left the game after 5 2/3 innings, giving up just one run on one hit while striking out three Astros. Morton nearly matched Wood. He went 6 1/3 innings, giving up just three hits and surrendering one run while striking out seven Dodgers.
THE DFAs (Designated for Assignment)
KEN GILES: Giles blew the save in Game Two of the World Series. He had allowed at least one run in five of his six playoff outings. Yet for some reason he was brought in to the pitch in the top of the ninth inning with the score tied 1-1. Giles faced three batters. He got none of them out. They all scored.
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A.J. HINCH: Hinch has had a good World Series as manager. He was very good in Game Three, ignoring his bullpen, which struggled mightily in Game Two, and going with a tandem of Lance McCullers Jr. and Brad Peacock. But he might have gone a batter or two too far with Morton, and then going with Giles despite his shaky playoff performance is going just a bridge too far.
COLLIN MCHUGH: Did McHugh die and do the Astros have yet to inform the media? There’s got to be some reason that McHugh has seemingly disappeared from the team despite being on the playoff roster? It might have been a good idea to pair McHugh, who pitched four excellent innings in relief of Morton in Game Three against the Yankees, with Morton again for Game Four against the Dodgers. Instead Hinch went to his underperforming bullpen and had to deal with another breakdown.
YULI GURRIEL: The Astros first baseman scored the first run on Friday night, blasting a home run off Dodger starter Yu Darvish to give Houston the lead. Upon returning to the dugout, Gurriel made a racist gesture toward Darvish. People were understandably upset. Gurriel apologized. Darvish accepted and was gracious when questioned about the matter. The Astros expressed disappointment with Gurriel's actions. It was noted that MLB has previously suspended players for gay slurs, so it was thought that Gurriel might have to miss some World Series games. That will not happen as MLB has decided to suspend Gurriel, but not until next season, when Gurriel will be suspended for the first five games without pay. For some reason, there are Astros fans upset about this, thinking that MLB overreacted. These fans should be thankful that MLB didn’t follow through on precedent and suspend him immediately.
The World Series is tied at two games apiece. Game Five on Sunday night is a rematch of Game One as Dallas Keuchel matches up against Clayton Kershaw. The Astros want to head back to Los Angeles with a series lead and knowing that Justin Verlander is set for the possible clincher. The Dodgers want to head back with the 3-2 lead, knowing that they only need to win one to claim another World Series title.