Adam Eaton, Juan Soto, and Anthony Rendon contributed home runs in the 7-2 victory.
The crime got going early since the Nationals used little ball to take a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning against Justin Verlander. Trea Turner reached on an infield single, though he had been originally known but reluctantly given his base on replay review. Eaton moved Turner to second base with a bunt and Anthony Rendon sent him home with a grounder up the middle.
The Astros bounced back to plate two runs in the bottom half of the moment against Strasburg. George Springer delivered a rocket off of the wall in left field for a double, advanced to second on a wild pitch, and scored on José Altuve’s sacrifice fly. Alex Bregman broke the 1-1 tie with a solo homer into the Crawford Boxes in left field. Bregman carried his bat to first base, an act that somehow proved contentious.
Both novices could settle down from there, together with the offenses remaining largely dormant until the fifth inning. Verlander made a couple of mistakes at the top half of the frame, surrendering solo homers to Eaton and Soto. Soto mimicked Bregman, carrying his bat to first base and dropping it in front of first base coach Tim Bogar. Verlander saw his way out of this inning, but it would be his last. He’s still not earned a win at a World Series start, today with seven attempts.
Strasburg, meanwhile, found himself speeding towards the end of the game. He worked around a leadoff single in the sixth, then pitched a 1-2-3 seventh and eighth on 16 mixed pitches. There was some more umpiring play in the seventh, click here to read about that. Just for good measure, Anthony Rendon tacked on two insurance runs with a double to right-center field in the top of the ninth, carrying all sorts of pressure from Strasburg.
Strasburg returned to the mound for the top of the ninth at 102 pitches, attempting to become the first pitcher to throw a complete game in the World Series because Johnny Cueto for the Royals in Game two of the 2015 Fall Classic. It was not in the cards. Strasburg got Gurriel outside on a deflected line drive to Asdrúbal Cabrera. Acting manager Chip Hale decided to make lefty Sean Doolittle for its platoon matchup against Yordan Álvarez, ending Strasburg’s outstanding night. Doolittle got Álvarez to line out to left field for the second out. Carlos Correa kept the Astros’ hopes alive with a line drive double from the left field wall, but Robinson Chirinos popped around second base to end the game.
Strasburg’s final lineup: 8 1/3 innings, two runs on five hits and two walks with seven strikeouts on 104 pitches. He has a 1.46 career postseason ERA at 55 1/3 innings.
With the Nationals’ 7-2 win on Tuesday, the road team has now won the first six matches of the World Series. It is the first time the road team has won the first six games of the World Series. The Nationals will hope to make it seven. The two clubs will play for all the marbles on Wednesday night. Zack Greinke will go for the Astros and Max Scherzer will heroically start for the Nationals.