Kenley Jansen is having a bad day. Baseball fans everywhere are not. Sure, Dodgers fans are down to the cuticles and fans of good pitching are being “that guy” at the office today, but DID YOU SEE THAT GAME? And it’s not the first game of its kind this series, making this potentially one of the greatest World Series of all time.
I, personally, thought the Dodgers had it locked down after a three-run first, but I’ve clearly learned nothing in my life. Baseball has a tendency, at least in the regular season, to disappoint you and fail to meet your expectations at times (this is coming from a lifelong Mariners fan, mind you. Life sucks when you depend on guys like Jeff Cirillo to come through in the clutch), but not in the postseason. I don’t know what these guys have running through their veins, but I don’t even care. This is the best series we’ve ever seen.
Five hours is a long baseball game. Five hour games are why your flat-brimmed friends cuddle up with their two-liters of Baja Blast and flip between football and some TV show with the word “diesel” in the title. They’d check out by the sixth inning while the real fans stay up past midnight. Good baseball, nay, great baseball is a helluva reason for Houstonians to stay up late after the different kind of sleepless nights they’ve had to endure.
Look at the numbers: 7 home runs, 14 pitchers used, 25 runs scored, 28 hits total, and more lead changes than Dwight’s competition against the computer. Also, one 23-year-old who just fulfilled your childhood dream of hitting a walk-off in the World Series. You feel awesome about that homer you hit in your softball league right now. The combined 22 home runs hit by the Dodgers and Astros has set a World Series record, making this Series a wonderful embodiment of what was a record-breaking season.
The offense put up in Game 5 is just about the last thing you’d expect with this kind of pitching matchup: Clayton Kershaw and Dallas Keuchel. Keuchel has allowed a record 8 home runs this postseason, likely not a stat he’ll have engraved on his Hall of Fame plaque one day. Whether this speaks to the unrelenting pressure of postseason baseball or just the sheer will of batters, it doesn’t matter, this is amazing stuff to watch.
The Series moves back to Los Angeles, where the Astros will have the chance to clinch the title and the Dodgers will attempt to force a Game 7. Buckle up.