A weekly look at all things Houston sports from the Harris County-Houston Sports Authority: Bob McNair picks up an award

Texans owner Bob McNair is set to be honored. Bob Levey/Getty Images

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In a year filled with #HoustonStrong moments, the Texas Sports Hall of Fame added one more to the list when it chose to honor Houston Texans owner Bob McNair with the Lamar Hunt Lifetime Achievement Award.

McNair, a businessman and philanthropist who brought the NFL back to Houston after the Houston Oilers moved to Tennessee, is the sixth recipient of the TSHOF’s highest honor.

He will be honored at a March 1 reception and dinner at the Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa.

“I am extremely honored to be recognized by the Texas Sports Hall of Fame with their Lamar Hunt Lifetime Achievement Award,” McNair said. “Sports, especially football, have been a passion for the better part of my life. I am humbled to be recognized for simply doing that which has brought me so much joy.”

McNair is the first Houstonian to earn the honor. He joins Don Carter,  the founding owner of the Dallas Mavericks and Dallas Sidekicks; former San Antonio Spurs owner Red McCombs; former Houston Astros owner Drayton McLane Jr.; legendary Waco sportswriter and sports editor Dave Campbell and former University of Houston Athletic Director Rudy Davalos as winners of the Lamar Hunt Award.

"It's quite an honor," McNair to the Houston Chronicle in June. "There's some great sports owners who have been honored this way. I'm delighted and humbled that I'd be included in the group.

“It is special because many of the honors I've received were based on things I did in prior endeavors. This is in my sports endeavor. That's a real honor to be recognized that way."

McNair’s vision to return the NFL to Houston started in1998 and on October 6,1999, the NFL awarded the 32nd franchise to McNair. Houston has subsequently hosted two Super Bowls – in Super Bowl XXXVIII in 2004 and Super Bowl LI last February.

McNair’s legacy in Houston also extends to his philanthropic efforts to, among others, Rice UniversityBaylor College of Medicine, Houston Grand Opera and the Museum of Fine Arts.

“We are thrilled to recognize Bob McNair’s incredible impact on sports in the state of Texas,” said TSHOF President and CEO Cooper Jones. “He not only brought professional football back to the City of Houston, but his strong leadership and unwavering commitment to his community, and the state of Texas, is truly an example for us all.”


If you’re still looking for a holiday gift for a sports fan in your family, or want to give yourself a little gift, think about purchasing a Golden Ticket. The $100 ticket – there are only 500 available -- enters you in the inagural Houston Sports Awards Golden Ticket Raffle and gives you a chance to win a pair of season tickets to all Houston Astros, Houston Rockets, Houston Dynamo, Rodeo Houston & Houston Open home games/events during the 2018-19 season. In addition, the winner receives tickets for two Houston Texans home games, the 2018 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff and the 2018 Texas Bowl. The Houston Sports Awards is February 8 at the Hilton Americas. Information on event and the Golden Ticket is available at

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Yordan Alvarez provided the offense to back up more stellar pitching by the Astros as they took ALCS game 6 to advance to the 2021 World Series. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

After splitting the first two games of this series in Houston then falling behind in the series 2-1 by dropping the first of three games in Boston, the Astros took over the ALCS in Games 4 and 5, sending them back to their home crowd with a chance to finish things off in Game 6 at Minute Maid Park. After another stellar performance by their pitching staff and more timely hitting, they would accomplish that mission, winning the series and moving on to the 2021 World Series.

Final Score: Astros 5, Red Sox 0

ALCS Series (Best of Seven): Houston wins 4-2

Winning Pitcher: Luis Garcia

Losing Pitcher: Nathan Eovaldi

Houston strikes first to start tightly-contested Game 6

After a scoreless top of the first inning by Boston's offense, the Astros capitalized on a chance to be first to score in the bottom of the frame. Alex Bregman started the two-out rally, reaching base on a single against Nathan Eovaldi for the first hit of the night. Yordan Alvarez followed, delivering his sixth RBI of the series with a double to put Houston on top 1-0.

That did not spark further immediate scoring, as the one-run score held while both starting pitchers provided solid outings for their team. For Eovaldi, he was able to limit Houston to just that single run through four frames. He returned in the bottom of the fifth, facing two batters, allowing a single, and getting a strikeout to end his night.

Garcia impresses in big start

For the home team, they were recipients of another expectation-exceeding performance from one of their young arms. Only anticipated to go a handful of innings, Luis Garcia worked efficiently and effectively against Boston, keeping them scoreless and hitless through five innings. He continued in the sixth, getting two more outs before allowing a two-out triple, ending his night as Phil Maton would enter to strand the tying run. Garcia's final line: 5.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K, 76 P.

With both teams dipping into their bullpens, the Astros took advantage of Boston's as Yordan Alvarez's dominance went on display once again. He led the inning off with a triple, then scored on a double-play ball to extend Houston's lead to 2-0. Kendall Graveman took over on the mound in the top of the seventh and worked himself into a big moment. He gave up a one-out walk, followed by a single, which put runners on the corners for Boston. He continued to struggle with the zone, falling behind the next batter 3-1, but was able to battle back to get the strikeout paired with a terrific throw by Martin Maldonado to cut down the runner from first trying to steal second, ending the inning and maintaining the two-run advantage.

Astros headed to the World Series

Ryne Stake was Houston's next reliever, and he put Houston three outs away by getting a 1-2-3 eighth. With Ryan Pressly warming, he watched and hoped that his offense could give him some more insurance to work with when he went to the mound in the top of the ninth. His wish would be granted, as after getting two on base, Kyle Tucker would put a major exclamation point on the night's offense, hitting a three-run opposite-field homer to the Crawford Boxes to push the lead to 5-0.

Pressly, now with the five-run lead, came on to try and start the celebration by getting the final three outs. Against the tougher part of Boston's order, he would get a 1-2-3 inning, giving the Astros the American League pennant, which along with those won in 2017 and 2019, puts them back in the World Series for the third time in five years.

Up Next: The Astros will have three days off before The Fall Classic kicks off. While Game 1 will be on Tuesday, October 26th, nothing else has yet been determined as Houston awaits to see which of the Dodgers and Braves will advance out of the NL, which will also dictate if the Astros will host or travel to World Series Game 1.

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