The Nationals played some small ball to take an early 1-0 lead over Justin Verlander and the Astros in Game 6 of the World Series on Tuesday night in Houston. Trea Turner led off with an infield single to third base. He was initially called out but replay review overturned the ruling and rightfully gave him his base hit. Adam Eaton then laid down a sacrifice bunt to move Turner to second base. Anthony Rendon followed up by poking a ground ball single up the middle to plate Turner, breaking the scoreless tie. Verlander escaped the inning without any further damage.
As we highlighted earlier, the first inning has been tricky for Verlander this postseason. If the trend continues, Verlander should be able to correct course from here. The Nationals may be kicking themselves for not doing more early damage.
The Astros answered back in a big way in the bottom half of the first against Stephen Strasburg. George Springer led off with a roaring line drive double off the top of the high wall in left field, then moved to third base on a wild pitch. José Altuve brought Springer home on a sacrifice fly to tie the game up at 1-1.
Strasburg was trying to find his way out of the first inning but Alex Bregman took him yard with the bases empty and two outs to give the Astros a 2-1 lead. Yuli Gurriel stepped to the plate next and nearly hit a solo homer of his own, but it was caught up against the wall just to the right of the Crawford Boxes by Juan Soto, ending the first inning.