Two games in, and the World Series brings enthusiasm to the UC Santa Barbara campus. “This World Series is as exciting as we anticipated,” Third-year Sociology major Sara Canas stated. 

The Houston Astros made it to the World Series again after losing to the Atlanta Braves last year. However, the Philadelphia Phillies look to continue their Cinderella story and add a third World Series title to their franchise history. 

In Game 1, Astros’ pitcher Justin Verlander looked to secure his first win in the World Series after being winless in 8 career starts.

Verlander started strong by throwing 3 scoreless innings while receiving some run support from his teammates. 

Right Fielder Kyle Tucker supplied the offense with 2 home runs from Philadelphia’s pitcher, Aaron Nola in the second inning to break the 0-0 tie. 

When it came to hitting home runs, Tucker wasn’t finished there. In the third  inning, Tucker hit a 3-run home run, making the score 5-0 in favor of the Astros.

The Phillies are not strangers to being down early. Bryce Harper, the National League Championship Series MVP, has led his team out of early deficits to secure a comeback victory. 

Third-year Financial Math and Stats major Kevin Alarcon stated, “I knew the Phillies would come back. Harper’s got that dog in him.”

Alarcon was, indeed, right about the comeback. In the top of the 4th inning, the Phillies scored 3 runs when rightfielder Nick Castellanos singled in first baseman Rhys Hoskins for an RBI. Third baseman Alec Bohm doubled in Harper and Castellanos for 2 more RBIs, bringing the score to 5-3. 

With this momentum, the Phillies’ offense didn’t stop in the 4th inning. In the 5th, Philadelphia tied the game at 5-5 when catcher J.T. Realmuto doubled in outfielders Brandon Marsh and Kyle Schwarber for two RBIs.

From there on, it became a bullpen game. Four consecutive scoreless innings led to no action until the 10th inning.

Going into extra innings, Realmuto broke the tie in the 10th inning. On a 3-2 pitch, Realmuto hit a solo shot home run toward the opposite field to put the Phillies ahead. 

Looking to secure Game 1, Phillies’ manager Rob Thomson brought in his closer, pitcher David Robertson. 

Going into Game 2, the Astros looked to strike early again after letting 6 unanswered runs beat them on Oct. 28. 

The Astros wasted no time, hitting 3 consecutive doubles on 4 pitches to bring the score to 2-0, in favor of them. Two outs later, a throwing error against shortstop Edmundo Sosa allowed another run to score, making it 3-0 for the Astros. 

Later in the game, third baseman Alex Bregman added some insurance runs by hitting a 2-run home run to make the score 5-0 in the 5th inning. 

The Phillies’ offense did not go scoreless. Philadelphia brought across 2 runs, one in the 7th inning and one in the 9th inning. However, Astros’ pitcher Framber Valdez pitched a spectacular game, going 6 innings and giving up 4 hits, 1 run and 9 strikeouts, earning the win.

Astros’ closer, Ryan Presley did not record the save since the margin was too significant, but did record 3 outs in the 9th inning to bring the series to a 1-1 tie in the best of 7 games.

Going into Game 3, third-year economics major Isaac Moisa provided his thoughts on the World Series. “The Phillies are trying to become the third NL [National League] East team in the last four seasons to beat the Astros in the WS [World Series], but they’re going to need more offensive contribution from guys besides Harper and Realmuto if they want to have a chance against Houston’s pitching depth.”

Game 3 will be held in Philadelphia on Oct. 31 at 5:03 p.m. PST.