The Diamondbacks put up a little bit of offense, and remained relentless to put up a LOT late against the Rangers. Couple the bats with Merrill Kelly put on a pitching masterclass, ending his day with seven innings pitched, three hits, one earned run, no walks, and nine strikeouts. Combine those two factors, and Texas never had a chance in a 9-1, Game 2 blowout.
The first three innings were uneventful, with just two hits allowed, both for the Diamondbacks — it was a real pitchers’ duel brewing between Kelly and Jordan Montgomery.
The Snakes bit first, with a solo homer from Gabriel Moreno that traveled 413 feet to center field.
THAT BALL IS GONE— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) October 29, 2023
The Snakes strike first in Game 2!
: FOX pic.twitter.com/JbLvZI8v9t
Following close behind Moreno was a two-out double for Tommy Pham, the perfect setup for Lourdes Gurriel Jr. to knock him in with an RBI single. After coming up blank for three innings, a 2-0 lead gave the Diamondbacks room to breathe. The Rangers tried to answer with a hit, but their fourth-inning effort would prove to be fruitless.
The fifth inning would give us free tacos, thanks to Geraldo Perdomo stealing second. Oh, and a Mitch Garver solo home run finally put the Rangers on the board.
Mitch Garver went down to get this one for a HR!— Flippin' Bats Podcast (@FlippinBatsPod) October 29, 2023
Texas has cut the deficit in half
: FOX pic.twitter.com/bz1CRcJc6P
I never thought I would get a chance to write this, but there was a TOOTBLAN in the World Series! Pham must’ve forgotten what he was doing, and his brain cramp saw him picked off to end the top of the sixth. For anyone unfamiliar with the term, TOOTBLAN stands for thrown out on the bases like a nincompoop. Here is a perfect example:
I think I figured out Heim's sign to Montgomery to pick at 2B. It's pretty subtle, but see if you can spot it. pic.twitter.com/MRgkOOSOYc— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) October 29, 2023
Arizona had a hot seventh inning that started with an Alek Thomas double, an Evan Longoria single, a sac bunt from Perdomo, and a single from Corbin Carroll before Bruce Bochy came out to collect Andrew Heaney. The Rangers desperately tried to heat up the bats, but were shut down by Kelly. The game remained 4-1.
Merrill Kelly being a failed prospect, leaving to pitch in Korea for four years, rebuilding himself, coming back to the States and then shoving in the World Series is an incredibly awesome story.— Max Mannis (@MaxMannis) October 29, 2023
Pham continued to make the night interesting, going 4-for-4. Martín Pérez then walked the next two batters, leaving the bags loaded for Ketel Marte. The NLCS MVP responded with a two-strike, two-out single to send two home. Carroll, not wanting to feel left out, kept the rally going with an RBI single. The top of the eighth ended with Arizona up by six.
But there was still a chance for Texas, surely.
Adolis Garcia’s gonna hit a 6-run homer in the 9th to tie it. Sorry saw the script beforehand— Razzball (@Razzball) October 29, 2023
Arizona would pile on two additional runs in the ninth because you know, they needed some insurance runs.
García would step to the plate in the bottom of the ninth with two outs. Unfortunately, the Razzball prediction was off, but he did walk. Garver had a chance to start a rally, and was the only run for Texas earlier in the game, but Luis David Frías tossed the ball that induced a Garver line out to end the game.
The Diamondbacks won their first game of the series by eight, so I figured I’d add this fun fact for good measure.
Game 3 shifts the action to Phoenix, taking place on Monday, October 30 at 7:03 p.m. CT on Fox.