Things are getting interesting, folks! The MLB postseason never disappoints.
NL Championship Series Game 3: Arizona Diamondbacks 2, Philadelphia Phillies 1
Wow, what a nailbiter! Almost 50,000 fans witnessed one of the most exciting 2023 postseason games so far. What it lacked in action, it made up for in intensity.
The contest was all about lights-out pitching. Neither offense could get anything going through the first six innings. Then, the Phillies struck first in the top of the seventh. Bryce Harper led off the inning with a walk and eventually came around to score after an Alec Bohm single and a wild pitch by Ryan Thompson.
The Snakes answered in their half of the inning on a single by Tommy Pham and a double by Lourdes Gurriel Jr. Pavin Smith continued the hit parade with a single for Arizona's third straight knock. Not wanting to take any chances, Phillies manager Rob Thomson called on José Alvarado, who came in and got a double play and ground out to end the threat.
With the game tied at 1-1 in the top of the ninth, Philadelphia went rather quietly, only managing a walk and steal by Harper. Old friend and closer Craig Kimbrel got the nod for the bottom of the frame and quickly found himself in a bind. He walked the leadoff hitter Gurriel, who promptly stole second. Smith then singled to put men on first and third with nobody out. In a bang-bang play and a lousy send by Arizona's third base coach Tony Perezchica, Emmanuel Rivera hit a chopper to Trea Turner. Turner threw home to catcher J.T. Realmuto, who tagged Gurriel out at the plate. However, Kimbrel couldn't take advantage of the break as he walked the next batter, Perdomo, to load the bases then served up a walk-off single to Ketel Marte to hand the Snakes the victory.
With a heads-up play, Harper hustled home on a wild pitch for the game's first run in the top of the seventh.
Arizona promptly tied the game up in the bottom of the seventh on a double by Gurriel, who went 2-for-3 with one walk.
D-backs fans were treated to a playoff walk-off when Ketel Marte dropped a line drive single to center field.
AL Championship Series Game 4: Houston Astros 10, Texas Rangers 3
The all-Texas ALCS is all tied up, 2-2. The Astros continued to put on a show at the home of their intrastate rivals. Houston wasted no time putting a three-spot on the board in the top of the first, chasing Rangers pitcher Andrew Heaney before he could even finish the inning. Former South Sider Dane Dunning replaced the starter and got the final out.
The Rangers responded quickly and knotted the score at 3-3 by the end of the third inning. However, Houston would have none of it and swiftly responded with four more runs in the top of the fourth. Three of those tallies came on another mammoth José Abreu round-tripper. Pito has been absolutely crushing homers in the postseason; this one went 438 feet to left-center field. He also made a heads-up unassisted double play in the bottom of the fifth, killing a Rangers rally.
Just for fun, the Astros added a few insurance runs, including a two-run bomb from Chas McCormick in the top of the seventh and an almost-home run by José Altuve in the eighth. After an umpire review, New York overturned the call and awarded Altuve a double instead. Yordan Álvarez eventually drove him in, giving Houston a comfortable 10-3 lead. The Lone Stars faded to black in the eighth and ninth, leaving them one last chance to win at Globe Life Field tomorrow before heading back to Houston for Game 6.
Abreu hit his fourth four-bagger of this postseason and went 1-for-3 with two walks.
Since I really despise the Astros, I'm just going to put Pito highlights in here. Enjoy this defensive gem. José literally got Marcus Semien out by tagging his batting glove.
You can watch the ALCS Game 5 tomorrow at 4:07 p.m. on FS1 and the NLCS Game 4 at 7:07 p.m. on TBS.