Washington Nationals Win Team's First World Series
The Washington Nationals defeated the Houston Astros Wednesday night to win the professional baseball championship in the United States. The game took place in Houston, Texas, on the homefield of the Astros.
It was the seventh and deciding game of Major League Baseball's so-called World Series – even though countries from around the world do not compete. All the teams are from the U.S. except one: The Toronto Blue Jays of Canada.
The score of the final World Series game was five to two. It was the first World Series championship for the Nationals, or Nats.
The team had to depend on what had become a defining part of their recent performances, coming from behind late in the game.
'We stayed in the fight'
Team manager Dave Martinez, who had faced calls for his dismissal earlier in the season, spoke of resiliency. He said that the team needed only to win that day's game to turn things around.
"Guess what, we stayed in the fight," Martinez said Wednesday, repeating what had become a team slogan. "We won the fight," he added.
The Astros scored one run each in the 2nd and 5th innings of the game. Washington had scored zero. But in the seventh inning, the direction of the game turned when Nats player Anthony Rendon stepped up to the plate. He hit a homerun, and the Nationals were on the scoreboard.
Two more runs followed, when Nats player Howie Kendrick hit a two run homer. The Astros never scored another run. The Nats scored another run in the 8th and two more in the 9th.
A game like the season
"The way this game went is the way this whole season went," said Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman, who was the team's first player chosen after it moved from Montreal, Canada to Washington in 2005. "What a story. What a fun year, man," Zimmerman said.
Nats pitcher Stephen Strasburg received the most valuable player award of the World Series. He won Game 1 and Game 6 of the series with only two runs against him. He struck out seven batters in each game. Strasburg called the experience of winning a championship "surreal."
"To be able to do it with this group of guys is something special," he said. "We didn't quit."
The series itself made history. Each visiting team won each of the seven games. Washington won games one, two, six and seven in Houston, while Houston won games three, four and five in Washington.
I'm Caty Weaver.