Former Astro, Rays right-hander Charlie Morton dominates the former team


Astros starter Lance McCullers Jr knew what he was up against He had seen Charlie Morton at the helm in games won or returned home He had partnered with him in unforgettable moments, especially their triumph of the Series 7 of the World Game that ended with the Astros rushing to Morton to celebrate He knew

One glance was probably enough for a recall, with Morton in control of whatever he threw, pounding the area with fast balls (harder than usual, perhaps) and his curve. masterful too familiar

« Charlie was really good, » Astros third baseman Alex Bregman said after Morton’s dominant start on Saturday, which helped set the Ray’s 4-2 to eliminate the Astros. « He’s just one of the best in the game »

McCullers couldn’t allow error throws, not with his friend and former teammate treating like this But he couldn’t match him

Three throws went terribly wrong A wayward first inning stacked the number of throws McCullers would have finished before he could complete the fourth inning But before he settled in, shuffled his change and took out the Rays as he had done when he started rolling in game two he had three throws that changed everything

“I felt like I threw the ball really well,” said McCullers “Just a throw or two back to get the chance to really get a full start and really give the guys some length. I still had a lot to give « 

The first came on his first pitch of the game, hitting Manuel Margot Two hitters later tried to pass the heat past the hottest hitter in the playoffs Randy Arozarena crushed him, sending a fastball at 97 mph who caught too much of the plate at 417 feet for a 2-0 Rays lead

One inning later, McCullers was burned on very different ground at a very different hitter When McCullers snagged a breaking ball high in the area as if he were putting it off a tee, the Tampa Bay wide receiver , Mike Zunino, completed a 430-foot homeroom All seven points awarded by McCullers in the series were on home runs

By this point, McCullers was sure to have a short night’s sleep He needed 50 pitches to get through the first two innings When he hit 75 pitches, after allowing four hits and three runs in 32/3 sleeves, Astros manager Dusty Baker called out Brooks Raley to get Kevin Kiermaier, even though McCullers handled it easily

Morton had rolled Through 52/3 innings he gave up a first inning single to Michael Brantley and a slow roll that Jose Altuve hit with two outs in the sixth He had only thrown 66 shots Since 1912, Morton50 ERA’s 0 was the third best of winning games, behind only Madison Bumgarner and Justin Verlander

“I felt pretty comfortable from the start which is difficult in these kinds of games because it’s such an energetic atmosphere,” said Morton “There’s a lot of pressure I guess when you get the ball in these situations you just wanna go out there and be a pro « 

He’s 4-0 in winning games He allowed one earned run and 11 hits in 192/3 innings in those games According to ESPN Stats, Morton became the fifth pitcher since 1913 to start five series consecutive and to authorize one deserved race or less Only Curt Schilling’s six-game streak is longer

Rays manager Kevin Cash pulled it out anyway The early 3-0 lead was nowhere near as insurmountable as the 3-0 series lead that the Rays held and the Astros erased But Cash turned to Nick Anderson and he pushed Michael Brantley to second row

Morton, however, has been masterful, rising to 4-0 with a 046 ERA from the winner winning all games He’s undefeated in his last nine playoff appearances, going 7-0 with a 145 ERA and is the second pitcher to win five consecutive calls with all starts and allow one or fewer earned runs in each

“I’m trying to simplify it into a game plan,” Morton said “We had tips, ideas each of us had Basically, in three or four minutes, we agreed on the general concept of what we were going to do I was completely confident in the game plan I was completely confident in Z (Mike Zunino) behind the flat and the defense behind us There was nothing else to do but go throw the ball « 

Yet for all his past success in these situations, he might never have done better

« This is the best I have seen Charlie since catching up with him the last couple of years, » Zunino said « He had it all worked out He had a good mix It was so much fun to working with Charlie, the knowledge he brings to see Him do that on the biggest stage is a lot of fun « 

As the Astros knew This is what he did for them and now against them, making him a great game specialist heading to another series with another chance at the greatest of great games

“I wouldn’t say I’m comfortable,” Morton said. “I guess after the first couple, when I realized I could do it, the big games became something that I could do. ‘waited a bit impatientlyI faced a lack of self-confidence In order for organizations to give me the ball in big situations, it was most important to me, the belief that an organization should give me the ball I don’t know J ‘just get into a groove there, especially today

« It means the world to me, I feel like the guys at this clubhouse believe in me It was really special to me »

Jonathan Feigen has been the Rockets’ beat-maker since 1998 and a basketball enthusiast since before Willis Reed limped for Game 7 He became a sports writer because the reporter who was supposed to cover the University of Delaware basketball team decided to play one more season of college lacrosse and never looked back.

Feigen, who won the APSE, APME and United States Basketball Writers Association awards from El Campo in Houston, came to Texas in 1981 to cover the Rice Birds, was a sports writer at Garland before moving to Dallas to cover everything from the South West Conference hurray final to SMU after the death penalty

After joining the Houston Chronicle in 1990, Feigen covered the demise of the SWC, the rise of the Big 12 and the Rockets to their best level

Charlie Morton, Randy Arozarena

World News – USA – Former Astro, Rays right-hander Charlie Morton dominates former team


Donnez votre avis et abonnez-vous pour plus d’infos

Vidéo du jour: