Houston Astros fumble 5-0 lead to fall in Game One of the World Series

Justin Verlander's struggles continue in the World Series. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images.

For the second straight year, the World Series was back in Houston. For the fifth time in franchise history, the Astros opened the Fall Classic with a loss in Game One.

It was a solo home run by J.T. Realmuto that was the final nail in the coffin for Houston, and lifted the Philadelphia Phillies over the Astros 6-5 in the opening game.

The Houston Astros turned to ace pitcher Justin Verlander for Game One to start the Fall Classic on the right note. Through the first three innings, it went as perfectly as it could for the Astros, which makes the loss sting a whole lot more. Verlander went through the Phillies order with no issues. He did not even give up a single hit.

Kyle Tucker got things rolling on offense for Houston. He hit a solo home run in the second inning, and then after a couple more base hits by Yuli Gurriel and Chas McCormick, Martin Maldonaldo made it 2-0 with a ground ball to center that brought Gurriel home.

Tucker continued to be an offensive force for the Astros when he launched another bomb, this time a three-run homer that made it 5-0 in favor of Houston in the third.

Then the tide turned against Verlander. An innocent single by Rhys Hoskins with one out was the Phillies’ first hit of the game. With two outs, a red-hot Bryce Harper singled in the fourth inning.

He was followed by Nick Castellanos, who also singled and brought Hoskins home. It was Alec Bohm that hit the first major punch to the Astros with a double that brought Harper and Castellanos home to score as well and made it 5-3 Astros.

In the fifth, Brandon Marsh doubled to left. Kyle Schwarber walked, and after a pop out by Hoskins, it was Realmuto who made it a brand new game for Philadelphia with a rocket fly ball that brought Marsh and Schwarber around to score and tied the game at five.

Verlander pitched 5.0 innings, allowed five earned runs, six hits, walked two batters and struck out five. Philadelphia starting pitcher Aaron Nola went only 4.1 innings, also allowing five earned runs, six hits, two walked batters and also had five strikeouts.

Luis Garcia was the losing pitcher. He gave up the home run to Realmuto in the 10th.

The Astros will turn to Framber Valdez in Game Two. Philadelphia will turn to Zack Wheeler.

For Houston, Jose Altuve’s postseason hitting struggles continued. In five at-bats, his lone hit came on a soft fly ball that found open space between the Phillies outfield and infield in the ninth.

Yordan Alvarez went 0-for-4. Tucker was the Houston player of the game. He hit two home runs in five at-bat appearances.

Houston had a final chance at tying or potentially stealing the win late with both Alex Bregman and Gurriel getting on base in the bottom of the 10th, but Aledmys Díaz grounded out and that was the game.

Up next: The Astros play Game 2 against the Phillies at 7 PM on Saturday night.

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