The Los Angeles Dodgers are in a must-win situation Tuesday as they face the Houston Astros in Game 6 of the World Series at Dodger Stadium, but history is on their side.
The Astros moved within one victory of their first World Series championship with a 13-12 10-inning win Sunday, when they overcame three Dodger leads. Houston leads the best-of-seven series three games to two.
The home team is 42-24 in Game 6, a .636 winning percentage, including winning four of the past five.
Left-hander Rich Hill will pitch for the Dodgers against Astros right- hander Justin Verlander in a rematch of the Game 2 starters. Neither figured in the decision in Houston’s 7-6 11-inning victory Wednesday.
Verlander is 9-0 with a 1.53 ERA since being obtained by the Astros Aug. 31 in a trade with the Detroit Tigers.
Hill was 12-8 with a 3.32 ERA in the regular season. He does not have a decision in his three starts in the 2017 postseason with a 2.77 ERA.
“When you’re in an elimination game, to have him, his confidence, his demeanor take the mound, that’s a good feeling,” Dodger manager Dave Roberts said.
Roberts said he is “absolutely looking for Rich to go deep.” Roberts replaced Hill after four innings in Game 2, when he allowed one run and three hits, struck out seven and walked three.
The entire Dodger pitching staff is available except for Yu Darvish, who started Friday, and Clayton Kershaw, who started Sunday, Roberts said.
This is the latest in the year for a World Series game at Dodger Stadium. The previous latest was Oct. 25, 1981, the first year the postseason consisted of three rounds.
This is the first time the Dodgers have played a World Series game on Halloween, but it’s the fifth time overall a World Series game has been played on the holiday. The team issued a reminder to fans that masks and toy weapons of any kind will continue to be strictly prohibited at Dodger Stadium.
This will be the second Game 6 to be played at Dodger Stadium. The other was in 1978 when the New York Yankees defeated the Dodgers 7-2 to win their second consecutive World Series title.
This is the third time a World Series will conclude at Dodger Stadium, joining the 1978 and 1963 Series. The Dodgers swept the 1963 Series from the Yankees, the team’s only World Series sweep.
The Dodgers are the first team to have the home-field advantage in the World Series based on its record. It had gone to the team from the league winning the All-Star Game from 2003 through last season and had annually rotated between the league champions before that.
Roberts expressed confidence his team will be helped by playing at home.
“When you go to the ballpark and hear the chatter and get on to the field, all the soreness and things like that that you feel in a long season … they seem to dissipate when you have the energy of the crowd,” Roberts said.
—City News Service