HOUSTON — In a World Series where neither team has won a home game, the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals are headed to a deciding Game 7 after yet another team won a road game.
The Nationals, powered by slugger Anthony Rendon’s five RBIs and Stephen Strasburg’s pitching, forced a final game with a 7-2 victory over the host Astros on Tuesday night.
This is the first time the visiting team has won each of the first six World Series games.
The deciding contest is scheduled for Wednesday at Houston’s Minute Maid Park. The game will begin at 7:08 p.m. (8:08 p.m. ET).
Rendon hit one of the Nationals three home runs and also had an RBI single in the first and a two-run double in the ninth.
Strasburg was brilliant, striking out seven in 8 1/3 innings and shutting out the Astros after they scored two runs in the bottom of the first.
In six appearances in the 2019 postseason, Strasburg has notched five wins.
The pitcher told broadcaster Fox that he was giving away what his pitches would be in the first inning and worked with a coach to correct how he held his glove.
He said it was a mental grind throughout the night.
“For me it’s going out there and just emptying the tank and giving everything I possibly have,” he said. “I can live with the results as long as I do that.”
Astros starter Justin Verlander went five innings, giving up three runs on five hits. He remained winless in six career World Series appearances.
There was a 10-minute stoppage during the top of the seventh after a throw from Astros pitcher Brad Peacock hit Trea Turner as he sprinted to first. Turner was called out for interference by home plate umpire Sam Holbrook.
The Nationals lodged a protest of the game that was turned down during the delay.
The Nationals were upset because though Turner was inside the bat path, he was in his final step for first base when the throw hit him as he stepped in the middle of the bag. Instead of runners on second and third, the Nats had one out and a runner was on first.
But two batters later, Rendon hit a two-run, two-out home run off reliever Will Harris and the Nationals were up 5-2.
“I was actually pretty happy about the delay. I got to sit down for a little while before I went up to bat,” he told Fox. “It’s just a part of the game.”
The Astros had scored two runs in the bottom of the first inning. Leadoff hitter George Springer doubled and went to third on a wild pitch. He scored when Jose Altuve hit a sacrifice fly. One out later, Alex Bregman hit a solo home run to make the score 2-1.
Washington’s Adam Eaton and Juan Soto hit back-to-back one out homers in the top of the fifth to push them ahead 3-2.
None of the games has been particularly close since Game 1 in which the Nationals gave up two runs late but held on to triumph 5-4 in Houston.