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World Series Game Three: Three Things to Watch

Jose Altuve has been one of the lone bright spots for the Astros offense.
Jose Altuve has been one of the lone bright spots for the Astros offense.
Photo by Jack Gorman

The Astros, on the heels of an absolute clubbing by the Washington Nationals Wednesday night, held a players only meeting to try and sort things out. It is unclear how that meeting will keep the Nationals from smoking Astros pitching or wake up the bats so they can get hits with runners in scoring position. But, hey, it's something.

Down 0-2 after two losses at home, the Astros face some seriously long odds. In the history of the World Series, only 13 teams have come back after going into an 0-2 hole. Even worse, only three of those did it after losing the first two on their home diamond. The last time it happened was more than 20 years ago.

A loss in the Series, while we wouldn't go so far as to call it a wasted season, would certainly be a bummer considering how good they were this year. But, the Nationals are on fire and with Game 3 Friday night in the nation's capital, we have some thoughts.

History in the making

There hasn't been a World Series game played in D.C. in almost 90 years and the Nationals hadn't won a postseason series in the 15 years of their existence until 2019. That is a lot of history riding on their shoulders. They haven't flinched yet and the spotlight hasn't seemed at all too big, even for youngster Juan Soto, who turns 21 Friday. It would be a remarkable accomplishment, especially considering truly how good the Astros are as an organization and team. No one in Houston wants to see the Astros go down, but if there was any magic built into this series, our guess is it is with the Nats.

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Zack Greinke vs. Aníbal Sánchez

Because third starter Patrick Corbin threw in relief in Game 1, the Nationals will hand the ball to the veteran right hander who took a no hitter into the eighth inning of Game 1 of the ALDS against the Cardinals. The Astros counter with Zack Greinke, who has been OK if unspectacular in the postseason. The match-up would seem to favor the Nats here, but it will be an interesting matching contrasting finesse and firepower of two veteran pitchers.

Maybe a B12 shot?

Is there anything that can get the Astros bats going? We are willing to do a seance or even bring in a witch doctor if that would help. It would be one thing if the bottom of the order was struggling, but it's pretty much the entire lineup minus Jose Altuve. If they can't shake off the funk in Game 3, this series is going to be over before they leave D.C. Somebody, get a voodoo high priest on the line.

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