2022 World Series: Ben Verlander’s takeaways from Astros’ Game 6 win

HOUSTON – No team had won more playoff games over the past six seasons than the Astros. Now, no team has won as many World Series either.

The best team in baseball officially resides in Houston, again, as the Astros took down Philadelphia Phillies4-1, Saturday to win the 2022 World Series. The win marks the second title in franchise history, following the crown in 2017. For the first time since 2013, the MLB champions shut out their home field.

Let’s go to some takeaways from Game 6 for the Astros.

1. Yordan Alvarez explodes

I don’t think this team is here without Alvarez. He might not have had the World Series we would have expected from him, but this moment, everyone should have expected. Alvarez got the biggest chance, his three-run home run being the ball game. The Houston Astros won the World Series off the bat of Yordan Alvarez. He had three home runs in or after the sixth inning this postseason, tied with Troy Glaus in 2002 for the most in a single postseason. Only one player has more career home runs: Carlos Correa.

By the way, I’ve never seen a ball hit over the batter’s eye here in Houston. The estimated distance on Alvarez’s home run was 450 feet. I would say 550. It was mash. The stadium was shaking. It was crazy, the lights were going out. It was one of those moments where you remember where you were when it happened. It was so special.

Álvarez hits a home run

Álvarez hits a home run

Yordan Alvarez smashes a three-run home run to straight center to give the Astros a 3-1 lead.

2. Framber Valdez dominate

There’s an argument for him winning MVP. Two starts, two wins, dominant again here tonight, exactly like he was here in Game 2. Framber Valdez doesn’t get the love and respect he deserves because he’s not the “ace” of this staff. But Valdez is a superstar. He rose to the greatest occasions.

In the last World Series, he did not have the best to do it. He said he learned from it and will take it to this World Series. Two starts, two wins, and a huge, massive reason we’re taking the Astros to be world champions.

3. Jeremy Rock win MVP

Now you can say that Jeremy Peña is a superstar, and there is no doubt about it. He showed up when it mattered most in every game. He is the only rookie in World Series history to have a hit in every World Series game. You are continually impressed by the player and the person he is.

Carlos Correa was a superstar on this team, and now Peña steps in and we haven’t even talked about Correa all postseason. That’s how good Peña is. Everyone believed in him, and now the world sees on the biggest stage that this guy is a superstar.

4. Dusty Baker delivers

A World Series title was the last thing on Baker’s checklist. He is already a member of the Hall of Fame. He was a good player, he is a great coach. He is the only person to have 1,800 hits as a player and 1,800 wins as a manager. Baker’s managerial debut was on April 6, 1993 against the Cardinals. The leadoff hitter for St. Louis? Geronimo Peña, Jeremy’s Peña father.

Whether you’re an Astros fan or not, you’re happy for Dusty Baker. He is a legendary player and manger. He is the only coach in history to lead five playoff teams and come very close to winning in the past. You just have to be happy for a guy like Dusty Baker.

Dusty Baker talks about the Astros winning the World Series

Dusty Baker talks about the Astros winning the World Series

Dusty Baker talks to Tom Verducci, Alex Rodriguez, Frank Thomas and David Ortiz about winning his first title.

5. Dynasty cemented

This is a dynasty, no doubt about it. Six consecutive ALCS appearances, that’s a record. They needed this World Series to be a dynasty, but it’s very hard to understand that you’re in a dynasty while it’s happening. I don’t want to look back in 10 years and say, “That Houston Astros team, they were a dynasty.” Appreciate it now.

It’s very hard to win in baseball and be that consistent. The Astros have been one of the bottom two teams in the American League for six straight years, in the World Series for four of those years, and have won it twice, with no slump in sight. This is a dynasty, perhaps the second of the 2000s.

The San Francisco Giants, I would consider them one, three titles in five years. I’d say this Astros run was better than the Giants run because of consistency. Now, one less championship. The Atlanta Braves of the 1990s are the only team to reach the Championship Series more times in a row than the Astros, and they have only won the World Series once. But this Astros team, I have no other word than dynasty.

Interview with Astros owner Jim Crane

Interview with Astros owner Jim Crane

Crane discusses the keys to Houston’s recent success

6. The silenced critics?

I think the critics have been silenced for a while, but this officially silences them. You can’t argue with winning, and this is the ultimate win. There is nothing more that can be said. This team became a villain because of everything that happened in 2017, and they have embraced that villain role. You saw it in the World Series.

There’s no arguing how good this team has been since 2017. Now it’s all gone. Can’t go back to 2017 because his last championship was tonight. I don’t care what the critics say. You can hate on this team all you want, but they feed off of it and will win another championship if you keep hating.

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