This year’s World Series consisted of two teams that were not projected to be there. However, the Atlanta Braves and Houston Astros defied the odds and proceeded to the World Series. Two underdogs faced off against each other. How could this battle of two underdogs be boring? The competition between the two teams was supposed to be so even. We were all ready to see a back-and-forth clash with each game being close, yet that really didn’t happen.
In game one we saw the Braves score five runs in the first three innings. After that they didn’t look back. It never really felt like the Astros were going to make a comeback even though they scored two runs in the game. Game two was the same situation but in the opposite direction. The Astros scored five runs in the first two innings and that stuck for the rest of the game. Even though the Braves scored two runs in the game, it did not seem competitive. In game three, the pitching for both teams were very good. According to MLB.com, the Astros did not have a hit through the first seven innings of the game. Third baseman Austin Riley had a double in the third inning to drive in a run in the third inning and that one run held up for the entire game. The Astros were completely stifled offensively so it never really appeared like they could win that game.
Games four and five were the most exciting games of the series. In game four we saw the Astros go up by two runs early, but crumble in the sixth and seventh innings as they allowed the Braves to score three and win the game. This was the first lead change of the entire series and was one of two lead changes in the entire series. The other lead change came when the Astros had their back up against the wall in game five. Game five had the Astros come back from a four-point deficit to save the season. Then came a very underwhelming game six. The Astros needed a win to even the series up and have a chance to win the World Series. Many people were expecting this to be a close game, but the game ended up being a complete blowout. According to MLB.com, the Braves scored three runs in the third and fifth innings off home runs from outfielder Jorge Soler and shortstop Dansby Swanson. First baseman Freddie Freeman scored the final run of the game with a solo home run in the seventh inning to completely seal the victory. Again, the game was an absolute blowout: it seemed like the Astros did not even have a chance at winning the game. Although it was exciting for Braves fans, the game was not extremely exciting to watch overall. Most of the series was like this. A team would take the lead and then the other team would not be able to show any sign of a comeback.
What happened in the 2021 World Series? The Astros forgot how to score runs. In the regular season, the Astros scored the most runs in the league as they were a top three team in all of baseball offensively. However, in the World Series their offense was not a factor. People thought that their weakness may be their starting pitching going into the series. Although this was partly true, the offense was disappointing. The American League Championship Series Most Valuable Player (MVP) was Yordan Alvarez as he had a .522 batting average in the series. He was possibly the best hitter on the planet. Then his production severely decreased as he only hit .100 and had just two hits in the series. Alvarez was not the only player to disappoint. Third baseman Alex Bregman also had only two hits within the series. Pitcher Zach Greinke had three at bats in the World Series and he had two hits. Without their incredible offense, the series had no life as it did not seem as if the games were competitive.
Although the Astros did not play well as a whole, there should be credit given to the Braves pitching staff. Soler did win the World Series MVP, but the pitching won the Braves the World Series. Out of the six games played between the two teams, the Braves held the Astros to less than three runs in four of those games.
Defining this year’s World Series as boring may not be a common opinion, however it is true that the games did seem very one-sided. There did not seem to be as many back-and-forth games as normal. The entire series had just two lead changes. There was just less excitement overall. This could have been due to nothing crazy happening during the games, or the fact that there are fewer fans of the Braves and Astros. The 2021 World Series may not be a series that is remembered forever, but for now the Braves will celebrate their victory and enter the 2022 season as the champions.