Major League Baseball saw its single-season home run record fall in 2017, so perhaps it's no surprise that more home run history was made on the game's biggest stage Wednesday night.The Astros and Dodgers combined for eight homers in Game 2 of the World Series presented by YouTube TV, setting
Major League Baseball saw its single-season home run record fall in 2017, so perhaps it's no surprise that more home run history was made on the game's biggest stage Wednesday night.
The Astros and Dodgers combined for eight homers in Game 2 of the World Series presented by YouTube TV, setting a new Fall Classic record. When the long balls finally stopped flying at Dodger Stadium, Houston had come away with a heart-stopping 7-6, 11-inning victory that pulled the clubs even at 1-1 as the Series shifts to Minute Maid Park for Game 3 on Friday.
:: World Series schedule and coverage ::
Five of those big flies came in extra innings, setting a record for any MLB game, regular season or postseason -- not just the World Series.
The Astros, who won a World Series game for the first time in franchise history, went deep four times. Each was in the ninth inning or later, including three in extras. Prior to that point, Houston had four World Series homers in franchise history.
The previous record for the most homers in a World Series game was seven by the A's and Giants in Game 3 in 1989. Only once in the Fall Classic had there been more than one homer in extra innings -- when Josh Hamilton (Rangers) and David Freese (Cardinals) did it in Game 6 in 2011. The five extra-inning homers on Wednesday now account for 22.7 percent of the all-time total in extras of 22.
Here are more notable facts and figures from a wild Game 2:
Astros take to the sky
• Leading off the ninth inning, Marwin Gonzalez stunned the Dodger Stadium crowd by lifting an 0-2 cutter out to center field for a game-tying homer off Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen, who was beginning his second inning of work. Coming into Wednesday, Jansen had allowed just one homer in 29 1/3 innings over his 25 career postseason outings.
• Jansen had allowed just two homers on 0-2 counts in his career, both in 2016. Gonzalez had hit five homers down 0-2, including two this year.
• It was just the 10th game-tying ninth-inning homer in World Series history and first since Alex Gordon of the Royals took Mets closer Jeurys Familia deep in Game 1 in 2015. Nobody had accomplished that feat on the road since Boston's Dwight Evans at Cincinnati in Game 3 of the 1975 Fall Classic.
• Leading off the 10th inning, Jose Altuve gave the Astros their first lead of this World Series with a go-ahead home run off Dodgers reliever Josh Fields. Carlos Correa followed with a no-doubter of his own to give Houston a 5-3 lead. It was the 16th time in World Series history that a team hit back-to-back homers and the first time it happened in extras.
• It was the sixth career postseason homer for both Altuve and Correa, moving them into a three-way tie for second place in Astros franchise history with Lance Berkman, trailing only teammate Carlos Beltran (eight). All six of Altuve's have come in 2017, the second-highest single-postseason total for the Astros behind Beltran's eight in 2004. Altuve is the 21st player to go deep at least six times in a postseason and the third second baseman, after Daniel Murphy in 2015 and Chase Utley in '09.
• George Springer's go-ahead two-run blast in the 11th inning off Brandon McCarthy made him the sixth player to homer that late in a World Series game and the first since Freese's walk-off shot in the 11th inning in 2011.
• The Astros' third extra-inning homer of the game exceeded their total for the entire year until Wednesday. Only five times in franchise history had Houston even hit two extra-inning homers in a game -- most recently on Aug. 24, 2008, against the Mets. The Astros previously had two total big flies in the 10th inning or later in the postseason, with the most recent being Chris Burke's 18th-inning walk-off against the Braves in Game 4 of the 2005 National League Division Series.
Dodgers go deep, too
• With two outs in the fifth inning, Joc Pederson broke up Justin Verlander's no-hitter by lifting a home run just over the wall in right-center field to tie the game at 1. It was a good time for Pederson's first homer since July 26 against the Twins.
• Pederson now has two career postseason homers, and both have been game-tying solo shots against Cy Young Award winners. The other came in Game 5 of the 2016 NL Division Series against the Nationals' Max Scherzer.
• With two outs in the bottom of the sixth, Chris Taylor drew a walk off Verlander before Corey Seager drove a 1-2 pitch the opposite way over the left-field wall for a go-ahead two-run shot. Seager, at 23 years, 181 days old, became the second-youngest Dodgers player to smack a World Series home run, behind only Pete Reiser (22 years, 202 days) in Game 4 of the 1941 Fall Classic against the Yankees.
• Seager's homer came off a 97.3-mph fastball from Verlander, tying for the third-fastest pitch the Dodgers have taken deep in 2017, according to Statcast™. Taylor also homered off a 97.3-mph pitch against the Cubs in the NLCS.
• Yasiel Puig's solo shot in the 10th inning cut the Astros' lead to 5-4 and helped the Dodgers rally to push the game to the 11th. The ball left Puig's bat at 109.2 mph, according to Statcast™, tying it for his fifth-hardest hit homer of 2017.
• They didn't just hit homers, though. Enrique Hernandez's single to right field in the 10th scored John Forsythe and tied the game at 5. It was the Dodgers' first game-tying hit in extra innings in their postseason history.
• Charlie Culberson's solo shot in the 11th cut Houston's lead back to one, although this time, L.A. couldn't complete the rally. Still, its two extra-inning homers exceeded the franchise's previous all-time postseason total of one. That came in Game 4 of the 1988 NLCS, when Kirk Gibson went deep in the 12th inning at Shea Stadium to lift the Dodgers over the Mets.
Dodgers bullpen hits rare rough patch
• When Correa bounced a single up the middle to score Alex Bregman in the eighth inning, it pulled the Astros to within a run at 3-2. The run, which came with Jansen on the mound but was charged to Brandon Morrow, broke a postseason-record 28-inning scoreless streak for the Dodgers' bullpen that dated back to Game 2 of the NLDS against the D-backs.
• Wednesday marked Jansen's first blown save in the playoffs. He had converted an MLB-record 12 consecutive postseason save opportunities to begin his career.
• Before Wednesday, the Dodgers were the only MLB team not to lose a game when leading after eight innings in 2017, according to ESPN. They had been 98-0 in such situations.
• Wednesday marked the first World Series victory in Astros franchise history. Houston was winless in its first five World Series games after being swept by the White Sox in the 2005 and losing Game 1 to the Dodgers.
• The Dodgers were 5-0 at home in the postseason before dropping Game 2 on Wednesday night. The series now transitions to Minute Maid Park, where the Astros are still unbeaten this postseason (6-0). Overall this postseason, home teams are now 24-9.
• Since the World Series moved permanently to the current 2-3-2 format in 1946, there have been 34 Series tied 1-1 after the first two games. The club going home for Games 3-5 has gone on to win 18 times (52.9 percent), and on four of those occasions, that club closed it out in Game 5 -- most recently the 2008 Phillies against the Rays. A team has won Games 3-5 on the road to end the Fall Classic three times during that span -- most recently the 1983 Orioles at Philadelphia.
Andrew Simon is a research analyst for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB.
David Adler is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @_dadler.
Joe Trezza is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @joetrezz.
Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles.