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World Series Game 1 open thread

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After a whole lot of baseball games to get here, it’s time for the World Series. Astros-Nationals should be a good one.

League Championship Series - Houston Astros v New York Yankees - Game Three Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

After almost seven months of baseball and the steady elimination of 28 other teams, the World Series has finally arrived. The hot-all-year Astros and the hot-since-Memorial Day Nationals will square off over the next week or so to settle who takes home the hardware for the 2019 season.

It should be a good matchup and one that will hopefully produce some exciting baseball. The Astros have some of the best-known established stars in baseball, like Jose Altuve and Justin Verlander, among others. The Nationals are not without such players, including Max Scherzer and Anthony Rendon. They’ve also got exciting young players like Juan Soto and Victor Robles.

In 1997, the Orioles played the Mariners in the ALDS. One thing that always strikes me when looking back on those box scores is how many future Hall of Famers were on those teams. I think in another 20 years we might be looking back on the 2019 World Series the same way.

Nationals lineup

  1. Trea Turner - SS
  2. Adam Eaton - RF
  3. Anthony Rendon - 3B
  4. Juan Soto - LF
  5. Howie Kendrick - DH
  6. Asdrubal Cabrera - 2B
  7. Ryan Zimmerman - 1B
  8. Kurt Suzuki - C
  9. Victor Robles - CF

One of the players who already looks like a future HOFer is getting the start for the Nats here. Scherzer is a legend already. His team winning the World Series, especially if he features prominently, would only add to that legend.

Astros lineup

  1. George Springer - CF
  2. Jose Altuve - 2B
  3. Michael Brantley - LF
  4. Alex Bregman - 3B
  5. Yuli Gurriel - 1B
  6. Carlos Correa - SS
  7. Yordan Alvarez - DH
  8. Martin Maldonado - C
  9. Josh Reddick - RF

Astros starter Gerrit Cole has evolved into a strikeout wizard since getting traded to the Astros in the middle of last season. Since joining Houston, he’s struck out 602 batters in 412.2 regular season innings. That’s nuts. So’s his line in this postseason, where he’s allowed one run in three starts, averaging more than seven innings per start.

It cuts against the prevailing narrative of bullpen ascendance in the game, though we’ll probably be right back to that when the next regular season rolls around. The Nats are heavily riding their starting pitchers this postseason as well. They have no other choice, because their bullpen was really bad. I will not regret if that bullpen failure manifests and costs them this series.