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Marty’s musings: Atlanta’s well-positioned heading into Game Six

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With favorable pitching matchups in Games Six and Seven, this is Atlanta’s World Series to lose.

MLB: World Series-Atlanta Braves at Houston Astros Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to ‘Marty’s Musings’, my weekly column of numbers summarizing the happenings in the baseball world. I am your guide for taking an analytic look at the news and notes throughout the game, and highlighting key pitching matchups.

Welcome to ‘Marty’s Musings’, my weekly column of numbers summarizing the happenings in the baseball world. I am your guide for taking an analytic look at the news and notes throughout the game, and highlighting key pitching matchups.

Atlanta has Houston right where they want them going into game six. With two favorable pitching matchups, the Braves are well-positioned to take home their four franchise World Series, and the second Atlanta World Series, something that hasn’t happened since 1995.

News & Notes

2 ⅓ - Innings tossed by Charlie Morton before his Game One removal due to a broken leg. Morton tried to go further into the game, but after a comebacker broke a bone, he simply could not continue. Atlanta still managed to win the game 6-2.

34 - Max Fried’s game score in Game Two, his worst start since July 5th. Despite being Atlanta’s best pitcher all season, his six runs in five innings contributed to Houston’s evening of the series at one game a piece.

2 - Hits allowed in Atlanta’s Game Three victory over Houston. Ian Anderson threw five no hit innings in game three, and although he wasn’t super-sharp, it was enough to completely shutdown the Houston hitters.

6 - Relief pitchers paraded out by the Braves in their Game Four victory on Saturday. Dylan Lee didn’t know he was starting the game until that morning, he only got one out before Kyle Wright threw 4 ⅔ innings of one-run ball. It’s not as aesthetically pleasing as watching an ‘ace’ go eight strong, but it worked for Atlanta.

2-for-3 - Zach Grienke has two hits this World Series, including a Game Five pinch hit single. Houston bats broke out again in Game Five; it’s been feast-or-famine, as they have seven and nine runs scored in their two World Series wins, and a combined four runs scored in their three losses.

Beyond World Series news, we would be remiss to not mention the passing of Red Sox icon Jerry Remy who lost his battle with cancer over the weekend at the age of 68. Remy was a beloved figure in New England; he grew up outside Boston, played for the Red Sox for seven seasons and was a NESN announcer whom fans welcomed into their homes all season long. Jerry will be greatly missed by the Red Sox community and baseball community at-large.

BtBS will release a proper obituary later this week.

World Series Game Previews

Tuesday, November 2

Game Six: Max Fried (ATL) v. Luis Garcia (HOU), 8:09 ET

The Braves control this series, with their two best pitchers available for game six, and potentially game seven. Fried didn’t look so great in his first start. Fried only went five innings and gave up six runs in the game two loss.

He’s on full-rest going into game six, and make no mistake, if Atlanta’s first World Series Championship since 1995 looks within reach, it’s likely we could see literally any other pitcher close-out Houston before getting to an all-or-nothing game seven.

Houston’s pitching on the other hand is largely in shambles. Taking a day-by-day approach down 3-1 in the series, Dusty Baker is calling on reliever Luis Garcia to make his second start of the series. While he pitched a perfectly acceptable 3 ⅔ one run ball in game three, it’s hardly the pitching matchup Houston would chose.

Wednesday, November 3 (If Necessary)

Game Seven: Ian Anderson (ATL) v. TBD (HOU), 8:09 ET

Game sevens are always intense and nerve-wracking, a 2021 World Series Game Seven wouldn’t be any different. The Braves have a clear plan should Tuesday night’s game not work out in their favor, as they have Ian Anderson scheduled to start. Anderson was great in his no-hit-bid in game three, though it was hardly a pitching clinic (which is one of the reasons skipper Brian Snitker removed him despite the five no hit innings).

This series is Atlanta’s to lose, but as we know, the Astros’ lineup is potent and dangerous. Alex Bregman as a seven-hitter says something about the potency of this Houston lineup.

If pitching wins championships, the Braves should be in great shape.

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Steven Martano is an Editor at Beyond the Box Score, a Contributing Prospect Writer for the Colorado Rockies at Purple Row, and a contributing writer for The Hardball Times. You can follow him on Twitter at @SMartano