After an impressive win over Gerrit Cole and the Astros in Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday, the Nationals went right back to work in Game 2 on Wednesday. They plated two quick runs off of Justin Verlander, staking Stephen Strasburg to a lead before he even took the mound.
Trea Turner led off with a four-pitch walk. Adam Eaton followed up by slapping a ground ball single to left field. Anthony Rendon brought both runners home with a double that clanked high off of the wall in front of the Crawford boxes in left field.
Verlander settled down from there, striking out Juan Soto, getting Howie Kendrick to fly out, and Asdrúbal Cabrera to strike out to end the inning. Now it’s Strasburg’s turn. In four postseason starts this month, he has a 1.64 ERA with 33 strikeouts and one walk across 22 innings.
Update: Alex Bregman answered on the Astros’ behalf in the bottom of the first, slugging a two-out, two-run home run to left field off of Strasburg. Tie game.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.
Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.
This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.
With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.