The Washington Nationals capped one of the greatest single-season turnarounds in baseball history by defeating the Houston Astros by a score of 6-2 in Game 7 to win their first World Series in franchise history:
For the first time in 95 years, the #WorldSeries champions are from Washington, DC.#STAYINTHEFIGHT pic.twitter.com/wxYc9XbQYo
— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) October 31, 2019
For the first six-plus innings, it appeared that the long-awaited coronation would be put on hold for yet another year. Astros first baseman Yuli Gurriel homered off Nationals starter Max Scherzer in the second inning, and Carlos Correa followed with an RBI single in the fifth inning. Things were worse for the Nationals in the box.
Astros starter Zack Greinke was absolutely dominating the Nationals, locating the fastball on both sides of the plate and mixing speeds to keep hitters off balance. Through the first six innings, the Nationals mustered just a single hit off Houston’s marquee deadline acquisition.
But, true to their mantra, the Nationals stayed in the fight.
After Adam Eaton grounded out to start the top of the seventh, Anthony Rendon homered off Greinke to get the Nationals on the board. Juan Soto followed with a walk, bringing the game to a cataclysmic moment.
Astros manager A.J. Hinch went to his bullpen. Hinch called on right-hander Will Smith, who had not allowed a single run in almost 10 innings of work in the postseason prior to Game 6. However, Nationals designated hitter Howie Kendrick was pretty unflappable in his own right.
Kendrick had already delivered a major hit when he clubbed a grand slam in the 10th inning of Game 5 of the NLDS, and he proved his merit once again. Kendrick homered off Harris to give the Nationals the lead, and they never looked back.
Washington added a run in the eighth and two more in the ninth, while Nationals left-hander Patrick Corbin provided three scoreless innings before Daniel Hudson shut the door.
They were 19-31 on May 23 after losing Bryce Harper to a division rival in the offseason. Their manager was on the hot seat, and it seemed like a lost season. But on Wednesday night, they conquered all of baseball by winning their fourth road game in four tries in the World Series.
The Washington Nationals are your 2019 World Series champions.