The Houston Astros became the first team to complete a combined no-hitter in the playoffs when they blanked the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday night.
It was the first time in World Series history that a pitcher had not allowed a hit in six or more frames, and it was the second time that a pitcher had done that in the Series.
The reenactment of the combined no-hitter he played a key role in against the Yankees on June 25 made him the first pitcher ever to start multiple combined no-hitters within a career. After throwing 115 pitches and recording 21 out of 21 in Yankee Stadium, Javier left. The right-handed pitcher was pulled after 18 outs and 97 pitches.
He turned the game over to the relief pitchers.
Bryan Abreu faced the heart of the Philadelphia's order in the seventh but still struck out the side. Astros right fielder Kyle Tucker was hit by a Jean Segura line drive in the eighth, but that was the last time he was struck by a ball. Astros closer Ryan Pressly finished it off in the ninth, just like he did in late June, this time he worked around a walk to record three outs.
"I tried to stay attacking the strike zone, trying to pitch as deep as possible into the game," he said through a translator. Today, we got a good result.
There have been 18 combined no-hitters in major league history, but not a single one in the playoffs. In last year's World Series, the Atlanta Braves defeated the Astros in the third game to take a 2-0 lead.
One of the most underappreciated starting pitchers in the sport was able to strike out nine batters and not issue a walk through the first six frames. He struck out five in a row at the beginning of the fourth. The pitcher with the lowest groundball rate in the majors in the sixth benefited from three ground outs. It was the first time in the history of the World Series that a pitcher had six no-hitters in a row.
"I don't think it's sunk in yet," Baker said in his postgame interview. The sky is the limit for him.
The Astros scored all five of their runs in the fifth, loading the bases with no outs against Nola, and then giving up a two-run double to Alex Bregman.
"We play for this and to make it even better," Houston catcher Christian Vazquez said after the game. Everyone did a great job and we're happy to split the series and end it here.