2017 World Series, Game 7
Houston Astros (3-3) vs. Los Angeles Dodgers (3-3), Nov. 1, 2017, 7:20 p.m. CDT
RHP Lance McCullers Jr. (1-0, 2.95, 1.04 WHIP, .209 BABIP, 4.15 xFIP in the playoffs) vs. RHP Yu Darvish (2-1, 4.15 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, .314 BABIP, 3.47 xFIP in the playoffs)
The Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers will play the 39th Game 7 in World Series history. The 2017 edition of the World Series will split the current tie of 18-18 between the home and road teams.
Since 2000, the home team in game 7 of the World Series is 3-2 while the road team has won the last two.
Both teams are now even at home and the road, the Dodgers are 2-1 at Dodger Stadium and Houston is 2-1 at Minute Maid Park. Houston will have to collect only their third road victory this playoff to win the franchise first World Series.
Both Lance McCullers Jr. and Yu Darvish enter their second start for the World Series. Both didn’t have stellar starts, but McCullers was far sharper. The Astros right-hander allowed three runs on four hits over 5 1⁄3 innings. He struck out three and walked four. Darvish, on the other hand, lasted less than two innings in his one outing. He allowed four runs on six hits over 1 2⁄3 innings.
Both pitchers will likely only go through the other teams’ lineup only twice. Nothing short of zero runs through those two runs through will be successful in World Series Game 7.
Darvish is making his first start at Dodger Stadium during the 2017 Playoffs. Darvish has allowed 12 earned runs over 22 1⁄3 innings at Dodger Stadium since joining L.A. at the trade deadline.
Lance McCullers is 1-0 with a 2.95 ERA in four games (two starts) during the playoffs. He has allowed six runs over 18 1⁄3 innings. The Dodgers got a run off McCullers with bases-loaded double play and Brad Peacock was pitching when L.A. scored the two other runs.
Three players had hits against McCullers in Game 3: Logan Forsythe (single), Joc Pederson (double), and Justin Turner (double). The thing that sunk McCullers was the walks, he walked the bases loaded in the third and led off the sixth with a walk. The Dodgers scored in both inning.
Yu Darvish allowed just two runs in the previous 11 1⁄3 playoff innings. Then Houston tagged him for four runs over 1 2⁄3 innings in Game 3.
Yuli Gurriel got the party started with a solo home run to start the second inning. Josh Reddick followed with a double. Marwin Gonzalez, Brian McCann, and Alex Bregman followed with RBIs.
3 Keys to Game 7
Yuli Gurriel has put the focus on himself for all the wrong reasons in this World Series. Gurriel has success against Darvish already in the World Series and now he put the focus on his play on the field with a big game in Game 7.
I keep going back to the well because the well isn’t dry. George Springer is batting .375 (9x24) with four home runs during the World Series. Springer will be key to getting up early against the Dodgers.
Charlie Morton will likely be the first guy out of the bullpen in a form to tadum starting. (Minus a specific situation where Houston needs to get a lefty out) Morton will have to hold the line early or keep the Astros in front late. But the season could easily hung on the salty pitcher.