The Tampa Bay Rays have punched their ticket to the 2020 World Series after defeating the Houston Astros in game seven of the American League(AL) Championship Series. The Rays defeated the New York Yankees in the AL East division battle to get into the ALCS. The sign-stealing Astros revenge tour has ended as the Rays have silenced them.
WE’RE GOING TO THE WORLD SERIES! pic.twitter.com/DN319UIwaa
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) October 18, 2020
Game 1: Houston- 1, Tampa:-2
The Tampa Bay Rays bullpen would take over after Snell threw 5 innings, allowing one run on six hits. Back to back innings in the fourth and fifth would let the Rays get their one-run cushion.
That would be enough after Snell surrendered a home run to Jose Altuve in the first inning. The Rays would go up 1-0, looking to jump out to an early series lead after their game one victory and seeing their bullpen continue to get things done and lock it down.
Game 2: Houston- 2, Tampa- 4
The Rays scored three runs in the first inning, and it would be all they would need. The Astros would scratch across two runs throughout the game, and the Rays would manage to scratch a fourth run across, but they ultimately won 4-2 to go up 2-0 in the series.
After another 5-inning start from their starter, in this case, it was Charlie Morton, the Rays bullpen backed it down. Their bullpen would allow the two runs that were scratched across by the Astros, but Manuel Margot’s three-run home run was a big help for the Rays game two efforts.
Game 3: Tampa-5, Houston- 2
The Astros would get out to a 1-0 lead after the first inning, but in the sixth inning, the Rays would tab five runs onto Jose Urquidy and Enoli Paredes to flip the script and make it 5-1. The Rays bullpen would not surrender a run, and the two runs would both come off starter Ryan Yarbrough.
Game three saw the Rays go up 3-0, showing that their versatility strategy in a pitching staff with starters, openers, and just general versatility has paid off immensely. The tide would change for the next two games, though.
Game 4: Tampa-3, Houston- 4
The Astros would shut down any thought of elimination early on, being up 4-2 after five, the Rays would scratch across a run in the ninth inning, but the Astros still won. Altuve’s home run off Tyler Glasnow would help the Astros offense get things going.
The series would be 3-1, heading into game five after a tough start for Glasnow, who allowed four runs over six innings. Zack Greinke was able to get the job done for the Astros on the mound, allowing two runs on five hits over six innings pitched, helping the Astros fend off elimination.
Game 5: Tampa-3, Houston- 4
In a close game, the Astros managed to avoid elimination after a walk-off home run by Carlos Correa in the bottom of the ninth inning to send the series to a game six. The home run came off bullpen arm Nick Anderson.
The Rays almost pulled off a bullpen game with an opener to advance to the World Series, but the Astros had other plans. The Astros would use seven different arms to get through the game, ultimately getting the win after Correa’s blast.
Game 6: Tampa-4, Houston- 7
The Houston Astros had a big fifth inning as they tallied four runs, put up one more in the sixth, and two in the seventh to accumulate their seven runs. The Rays would scratch four runs across, two of them coming in the eighth inning.
Blake Snell had a rough outing, giving up two runs over four innings pitched. Diego Castillo and Shane McClanahan combined to give up the other five runs that the Astros scored. Offensively, it was Correa who was 3-for-5 with Altuve being 2-for-3. A home run from Kyle Tucker also contributed to the Astros lead.
Game 7: Tampa-4, Houston-2
Charlie Morton was able to get things going for the Rays on the mound and keep them in game seven. Arozarena hit yet another postseason home run and was able to boost the Rays up 2-0 after the first, and catcher Mike Zunino would add another home run in the second.
The Astros would scratch across two runs in the eighth inning, but it was not enough. The Rays would prevail and move onto the 2020 World Series.
The Rays get back to the World Series for the first time since 2008 when they lost to the Philadelphia Phillies. The Rays will take on the winner of the 2020 National League Championship Series between the number one seed Los Angeles Dodgers and the surging Atlanta Braves, who are headed for a game seven.