Jorge Soler knew the fate of the ball as soon as he connected it. After the homerun hit, the Cuban player for the Atlanta Braves stood for a few seconds on the home plate. home and hit himself three times in the chest before starting the round to the diamond. It was in the third inning of Game 6 of the World Series, the exact moment the team began to cherish the long-awaited fourth victory against Houston, which has given the team its first title in 26 years. The moment also in which the Venezuelan Luis García, a pitcher for the Astros, knew that his work was over. This is Houston’s second loss in five years in a baseball final after taking the title in 2017.
The frustration of Houston coach Dusty Baker was noticeable since Soler knocked the ball out of Minute Maid Stadium with a 135-meter bomb that drove in three runs. The cameras captured the curse cry hidden by the mask of a manager obsessed with coronavirus protocols. Baker came out to the hill to relieve Garcia moments after the home run, which came in an eight-pitch duel between pitcher and batter. This was Soler’s third home run against the Astros, a milestone that places him on a select list with Lou Gherig and Babe Ruth. With six RBIs and a solid .300 batting percentage in the final against Houston, Soler became the MVP tonight. He is the second Cuban to obtain this recognition after Liván Hernández with the Florida Marlins in 1997.
The rotation of the pitchers was one of the main concerns of the Astros heading into Game 6, where they had to defend themselves against the disadvantage carried since the games held in Atlanta. The possibility of starting with José Urquidy as a shooter was considered, but the Mexican served as a reliever in Sunday’s game won by the Astros. The final decision was to start with the 24-year-old rookie, who had not had enough rest in his right arm as he pitched (and lost) the third game of the series, held on Friday.
The home run in the third inning was just the preamble to another display of the mighty offense of the Braves, the team that defeated, also in six games, the star-studded Dodgers who won 106 games in the national conference. This Tuesday Dansby Swanson, shortstop of the Braves, bounced the ball from the field in the fifth inning on a pitch at 150 kilometers per hour by the Dominican Cristian Javier, who entered high into the zone of strike. Swanson’s home run drove in two runs to extend a 5-0 lead that added more pressure to the Texas artillery.
Freddie Freeman, 31, one of Atlanta’s stars, also played his part on the historic night. He did it with a solo home run in the top of the seventh. It was also the seventh race, a lucky number for a player known in the league for his lucky star. Freeman, who has been in the Braves uniform for 12 years, had a productive night at bat, with a double in addition to the home run, his fifth in the postseason. With his performance tonight, he has made clear why he won the MVP award at the national conference in 2020. In the regular season he hit 31 home runs, extending an enviable record: eight of his twelve years he has hit 20 home runs or more.
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