Astros, Dodgers set World Series home run record in wild Game 5

Houston Astros close out a wild Game 5 of the World Series with a winGame 5 of the World Series had a little bit of everything, and a whole lot of home runs. The Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Dodgers combined for seven home runs on Sunday, raising the series total to a record 22 homers with at least one more game to play as Houston prevailed 13-12 to take a 3-2 series lead.

The score only scratches the surface of how much Game 5 was a wild back-and-forth contest. It took five hours and 17 minutes to play 10 innings of baseball that saw the Astros erase a pair of three-run deficits and build their own lead before Los Angeles returned the favour in the ninth inning. Each team used seven pitchers in a game that started with aces Dallas Keuchel and Clayton Kershaw, but Game 5 belonged to the hitters. Yuli Gurriel, Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa, George Springer, and Brian McCann all hit homers for Houston, while the Dodgers got a three-run shot from Cody Bellinger and a 2-run bomb from Yasiel Puig.

The Dodgers held a 4-0 lead early and seemed comfortable with Kershaw on the mound, but their lead was erased in the bottom of the fourth by a three-run Gurriel homer. Bellinger, who began the series in a major slump, put Los Angeles back on top with his home run in the following inning, only to watch Altuve do the same to tie the game again in the bottom of the fifth. Houston took its first lead of the night in the seventh when Dodgers reliever Brandon Morrow attempted to make his third appearance in as many days and threw a total of six pitches which resulted in a home run, a single, a double, a wild pitch, and another home run.

Los Angeles forced extra innings on Puig’s home run and an RBI single by Chris Taylor in the ninth, but Houston got to Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen in the 10th after Jansen hit McCann with a pitch and walked Springer to set up the game-winning RBI by Alex Bregman. The Astros are now a game away from winning their first World Series title, which seems fitting for the best offense in baseball in a series largely dictated by big offensive plays. Los Angeles has matched Houston’s output nearly every step of the way, and Sunday’s contest felt like a game that would be decided by whoever could last long enough to muster one more big hit.

The series shifts back to Los Angeles for Game 6 on Tuesday and a possible Game 7 on Wednesday, but the Astros will be looking to end things as quickly as possible with Justin Verlander getting the Game 6 start. None of Verlander’s starts for Houston in the regular season or playoffs have resulted in an Astros loss, and he already helped them steal one win at Dodger Stadium with his six-inning performance in Game 2. Los Angeles will counter with Rich Hill.