Altuve, Astros show up in World Series, win Game 3 in DC 4-1

WASHINGTON — The World Series finally showed up back in Washington, 86 years later — and, sparked by José Altuve, the Houston Astros finally showed up in this World Series.

Altuve doubled twice and scored both times, Zack Greinke repeatedly worked out of trouble, and the Astros made sure they wouldn’t go quietly despite looking listless while falling into a big hole at home, beating the Nationals 4-1 on Friday night to cut their deficit to 2-1 in the best-of-seven Fall Classic.

“I mean,” Astros manager AJ Hinch said, “we’re pretty good, too.”

Houston can even things up in Game 4 on Saturday night at Nationals Park. Washington will start $140 million lefty Patrick Corbin, while Hinch said he’ll go with rookie José Urquidy.

“We played really aggressive today,” Altuve said. “This is the team that we are.”

Washington’s eight-game winning streak, tied for the longest in a single post-season, ended with a sloppy performance in the first Series game hosted by the nation’s capital since the Senators lost to the New York Giants in 1933.

A sellout crowd of 43,867, dressed mostly in red for the occasion, soaked it all in, standing in unison at key moments, booing ball-strike calls that hurt their team, chanting “Let’s go, Nats!” often and even getting to do their “Baby Shark” sing-and-clap-along when that children’s tune blared as a walk-up song in the sixth.

“It was electric,” Nationals manager Dave Martinez said. “The boys in the dugout, they were fired up.”

But the wild-card Nationals were unable to move one win from a championship, undone by an inability to come through in the clutch: Birthday boy Juan Soto, MVP candidate Anthony Rendon and Co. were 0 for 10 with runners in scoring position, leaving 12 runners on base.

“Tonight we were a little bit aggressive outside the strike zone,” Martinez said. “We took balls I thought we should hit, uncharacteristic of what we’ve been doing.”

How big was this win for Houston? No team ever has come back after dropping the first three games of a World Series.

Maybe that’s why several Astros players gathered for a private meeting following their 12-3 loss in Game 2 on Wednesday. Whatever was said apparently worked.

“Get a little mojo back on our side,” Hinch said.

After playing what might have been their worst baseball of 2019, the Astros suddenly played more like the club that led the majors with 107 regular-season wins.

And, not surprisingly, Altuve was in the middle of a lot of it. He doubled in the third and fifth, coming home on singles by Michael Brantley.

“José’s the heart and soul of what we do,” Hinch said. “It was his turn to be a catalyst.”

Greinke, the 2009 AL Cy Young Award winner, only lasted 4 2/3 innings, and allowed seven hits and three walks, but managed to yield just one run. He was followed by five relievers who combined to give up two hits across 4 1/3 scoreless innings.

Josh James earned the win, striking out Ryan Zimmerman with two aboard to end the fifth.

“Huge,” Hinch said.

Roberto Osuna heard boos when he entered in the ninth, then got three outs for a save.

Josh Reddick delivered an RBI single in the second, Robinson Chirinos homered in the sixth and Houston scored four runs in 5 1/3 innings off Aníbal Sánchez. The 35-year-old righty had taken a no-hitter into the eighth inning of his previous start, in Game 1 of the NL Championship Series against St. Louis two weeks earlier. He gave up a hit on his 103rd pitch that night; this time, he allowed one on his third, to George Springer.

Sánchez went sprawling off the mound to try to make a play, but couldn’t. All part of a rough night in which he got so upset by a couple of ball calls that he asked plate umpire Gary Cederstrom, “Where was that one?”

Sánchez later barely avoided taking a ball to the face, getting his glove in the way just in time to deflect what ended up as a single. Another Houston hit came when Springer sent a comebacker off reliever Joe Ross’ left foot in the eighth.

In sum: After the Nationals could do no wrong for so long, things went awry Friday.

They made two errors and at least three other misplays on what were ruled hits. They allowed the aggressive Astros to steal four bases, two by Springer. Washington catcher Kurt Suzuki left in the sixth with a right hip flexor problem.

Soto, serenaded by fans in left field to celebrate his 21st, was charged with an error for a wild throw home that sailed over the head of Suzuki and a leaping Sánchez, backing up the play. Named a Gold Glove finalist Thursday, Soto let another ball trickle past his glove and went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts at the plate. He went down looking to end the game.

“We were putting a lot of pressure on them,” said Astros reliever Will Harris, who retired all five batters he faced, “and we kept it going for nine innings.”

UP NEXT

Astros: After turning to Urquidy at the start, Hinch is prepared to rely heavily on his bullpen.

Nationals: Corbin will be making his seventh appearance of this post-season, a third start to go along with four outings out of the bullpen. He is 1-2 with a 6.91 ERA, including one scoreless inning in relief during Game 1 of the World Series.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

Cilantro and Chive was voted in the top three in no less than 13 different categories in the 2020 Best of Lacombe Readers Choice Awards. Photo by Megan Roth/Lacombe Express
Cilantro and Chive opening in Red Deer

There will now be two Cilantro and Chive locations. The restaurant announced… Continue reading

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson, B.C. NDP leader John Horgan and B.C. Greens leader Sonia Furstenau. (Black Press Media)
VIDEO: One day until B.C. voters go to the polls in snap election defined by pandemic

NDP Leader John Horgan’s decision to call an election comes more than a year ahead of schedule and during a pandemic

Alice Kolisnyk, deputy director of the Red Deer Food Bank, says the agency expects an increase in demand as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Every new subscription to the Red Deer Advocate includes a $50 donation to the food bank. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Support the food bank with a subscription to the Red Deer Advocate

The community’s most vulnerable members are always in need of a hand,… Continue reading

Mariah Bell of the United States competes during women’s freestyle program in the International Skating Union Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/David Becker)
Canadian Keegan Messing earns bronze at Skate America in Vegas, Chen wins gold

Messing earns 266.42 points at Skate America in Las Vegas

In this Oct. 7, 2020 photo, chef Sohla El-Waylly prepares Swedish meatballs during a taping of “Stump Sohla,” in New York. El-Waylly became a familiar face on YouTube as a standout on Bon Appetit’s test kitchen channel. But during the nationwide racial reckoning following the police killing of George Floyd, she was among members of the test kitchen who accused the channel’s owner, Conde Nast, of discriminatory practices. She departed Bon Appetit in August after failed negotiations. Her new show is her own, pushing her to deploy her talent, charm and encyclopedic culinary chops to solve challenges. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
‘Babish’ expands as pandemic boosts YouTube cooking shows

Daily views of videos with “cook with me” soaring

FILE - Oprah Winfrey arrives for the presentation of Stella McCartney’s ready-to-wear Fall-Winter 2019-2020 fashion collection in Paris on March 4, 2019. Winfrey is setting aside her usual book club recommendations and instead citing seven personal favorites ranging from James Baldwin’s landmark essays in “The Fire Next Time” to Mary Oliver’s poetry collection “Devotions.” She is calling her choices “The Books That See Me Through,” works she values for “their ability to comfort, inspire, and enlighten” her. (AP Photo/Michel Euler, File)
`The books that see her through’: Winfrey suggests seven

Mix of fiction, poetry, non-fiction and spirituality

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
John Horgan says he will work across party lines to find ideas that work for B.C.

VICTORIA — British Columbia’s election results show a divided province with Liberal… Continue reading

President Donald Trump gestures from the top of the steps of Air Force 1 at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020. When people in the United States talk about moving to Canada to escape four more years of Donald Trump, it’s usually either a punchline or a pipe dream. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Susan Walsh
Move to Canada? A pipe dream for some Americans is a parachute for Canadian expats

WASHINGTON, Wash. — When people in the United States talk about moving… Continue reading

The Cogeco logo is seen in Montreal on Thursday, October 22, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week

TORONTO — Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world… Continue reading

Most Read