It began with Clayton Kershaw dominating for the Los Angeles Dodgers and ended with the Houston Astros hosting a championship trophy for the first time. Let's put a statistical twist on some of the most memorable moments of the 2017 Fall Classic.
Kershaw’s dominant Game 1
The only thing hotter than the weather (103 degrees at first pitch) was Kershaw, who became the first pitcher this season (playoffs included) to record 10 strikeouts against the Astros.
Kershaw became the first pitcher in World Series history to strike out 10 or more batters with no walks and three or fewer hits allowed.
Astros get to Kenley
Prior to that, Jansen had converted the first 12 postseason save chances of his career, the longest such streak to start a career. It was Gonzalez’s first career playoff home run and his first career game-tying home run in the ninth inning or later.
The extra-inning HR derby
After the Dodgers answered in the bottom of the 10th, Springer’s two-run shot tied for the fourth-latest home run in World Series history. The Astros became the first team with three extra-inning home runs in a World Series game and the first team to hit a home run in the ninth, 10th and 11th innings of a postseason game.
Overall, a World Series-record eight home runs were hit in Game 2.
Bellinger finally gets a hit
After going hitless in his first 13 World Series at-bats, Cody Bellinger hit a go-ahead RBI double to give the Dodgers a 2-1 lead in the ninth inning of Game 4. Joc Pederson hit a three-run homer later in the inning to seal the win.
Bellinger, who wore the “Golden Sombrero” the night before with four strikeouts, became the first Dodger with a go-ahead hit in the ninth inning of a World Series game since Kirk Gibson’s home run in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series. Per Elias, his 0-for-13 tied for the second-worst 0-for to start a World Series in Dodgers history.
Altuve ties it
An expected pitching duel in Game 5 between Kershaw and Dallas Keuchel turned into anything but. Right after Kershaw was pulled, Altuve hit a three-run shot to tie the game 7-7.
It was Altuve’s seventh home run of the playoffs, the most in a single postseason by a player born in Venezuela. Altuve, who also had an RBI double in the seventh, became the first Astros player with four RBIs in a World Series game.
Dodgers rally in the ninth
The Dodgers entered the ninth inning of a back-and-forth Game 5 trailing 12-9, and according to FanGraphs, their win probability was as low as 2.5 percent.
Yasiel Puig cut the deficit to 12-11 with the 101st home run of the postseason, the most in any playoffs in MLB history. Chris Taylor followed with an RBI single to up the Dodgers’ win probability to 57 percent.
Bregman walks off
The Astros moved within one game of the franchise’s first World Series title on Alex Bregman’s walk-off RBI single in the 10th inning.
It was Bregman’s first career walk-off hit (regular season or playoffs). Bregman became the second player to drive in a run in each of his first five World Series games. The other was Amos Otis of the 1980 Royals.
Comeback vs. Verlander
The Astros were 12 outs away from winning the World Series with Justin Verlander on the mound in Game 6, but the Dodgers rallied to force a seventh game. Corey Seager drove in the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly, and Pederson added another home run.
To that point, the Astros had won all nine of Verlander's starts since they acquired him on Aug. 31.
The autumn of George ends in fitting fashion
Springer hit a double and a home run in Game 7, as the Astros got to Yu Darvish and the Dodgers early en route to a 5-1 win.
Springer's home run was his fifth of the Series, tying the mark for most in a World Series shared by Reggie Jackson (1977 Yankees) and Chase Utley (2009 Phillies). Springer became the first player to homer in four straight games in the same World Series. Springer also set records for extra-base hits in a World Series (8) and total bases in a postseason series (29).
Springer’s home runs came in a different manner than he is accustomed to. In the regular season, six of his 34 home runs came on low pitches (lower-third of strike zone and below). In the World Series, four of his five home runs came on low pitches. He joined Jackson (1973 Athletics) and Pedro Guerrero (1981 Dodgers) as center fielders to win the award now named for a center fielder: the Willie Mays World Series MVP.
The Astros' win snapped a 55-season drought. Via Elias, that's the third-most seasons played before a franchise's first title in the World Series era.