Congrats Houston!!!

After going 7 games in the World Series and taking the 2017 season all the way to the final game, the Houston Astros won their first ever championship.  Both teams deserved it as these were the two best teams ever matched up in the World Series.  I am happy that Houston won for many reasons, but this season more than ever was special for Houston.  Given the tragedy of Hurricane Harvey and all the Houston citizens whose lives were affected by it, the Astros provided something for the city to celebrate.  For years being in the dumpster of MLB, they are now on top.  This series was a bit off the grid compared to other World Series in previous years.  As has been the theme for post-season baseball for many years now, bullpen pitching reigns supreme.  The 2014 Royals headlined the start of having a mega-bullpen to bring in and close out games starting in the 5th or 6th inning.  This season was supposed to be the same.  The Astros had some quality pitchers in the bullpen in Ken Giles, Luke Gregerson, and Chris Devenski.  Despite those names, it was Brad Peacock and Charlie Morton who were the heroes in the bullpen. Combined they pitched 17.2 innings with 4 ER and 19 Ks.  It was great managing by Hinch to go with the hot hands over Ken Giles.  Giles is a great pitcher and will be fine going forward, but the World Series is a different animal and you have to go with whats been working.  Last night, like the previous nights, I expected a comeback.  I didn’t expect to see the Dodgers go down easy considering the way the entire series had gone.  But Hinch simply took advantage of LA’s early mistakes and played the rest of the game safe by throwing his hottest pitcher, Morton, in to close the game.  The other obvious key contributor was the World Series MVP George Springer.  He ended the World Series batting .379/.471/1.00 with 5 home runs which is one of, if not the best World Series anybody has had offensively. He averaged .153 wpa (win probability added) which was best of anyone in this postseason.  He not only hit well, but he hit well when it mattered most.  Other players had their games where they shined.  Gurriel in game 1, Bregman in game 5, and Altuve in game 3.  Aside from game 1, Springer had a positive wpa in all of the games.  Yes, this World Series was an odd one.  It was an offensive battle with poor pitching.  If we put aside if the balls were slippery or not and if the ball was juiced or not, this will go down as an all time great World Series.  The big names stepped up when they needed to, and the under the radar guy contributed more than one would think.  The 2017 season is now over and teams will start working for their chance in 2018.  As for now the city of Houston needs to enjoy this World Series.  They earned it.

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