2023 MLB playoffs takeaways: Phillies down D-backs; Rangers take 2-0 ALCS lead

4 groups. Two spots within the World Collection up for grabs. The league championship spherical of the 2023 MLB playoffs is in full swing with each the ALCS and NLCS now underway.

Within the American League, the Texas Rangers and Houston Astros met within the early sport, with the Rangers beating Houston for a second straight day to seize a dominant 2-0 sequence lead earlier than heading to Arlington. Then, the Philadelphia Phillies jumped all around the Arizona Diamondbacks early — and held on late — to take a 1-0 NLCS lead.

Now we have you lined with takeaways and updates from each ballparks.

Key hyperlinks: Full playoffs schedule and outcomes




Kyle Schwarber hammers first pitch to proper for solo house run

Kyle Schwarber wastes no time placing the Phillies on the board with a solo house run to proper discipline on the primary pitch of his at-bat.


Philadelphia Phillies 5, Arizona Diamondbacks 3: The Phillies entered this NLCS as heavy favorites to beat the Diamondbacks and after a complete lot of early thunder in opposition to Arizona starter Zac Gallen, these odds now change to heavy, heavy favorites. Kyle Schwarber blasted a first-pitch house run to guide off the underside of the primary — with a Herculean 117 mph exit velocity. Two batters later, Bryce Harper launched one other first-pitch house run off a four-seamer. Within the second inning, Nick Castellanos tied Reggie Jackson’s mark of 5 house runs over three postseason video games by going deep in opposition to one more Gallen four-seamer.

In the meantime, Zack Wheeler cruised into the sixth inning, retiring 15 in a row at one level. Give the Diamondbacks credit score for scrapping their method again into this sport and making it fascinating, however now comes an uphill state of affairs. The sensation going into the sequence was the Diamondbacks needed to fare effectively within the Gallen/Merrill Kelly begins since they should rely closely on their bullpen in Video games 3 and 4. Now they’ve misplaced a Gallen sport whereas the Phillies’ offense stays on hearth in turning into the primary workforce in postseason historical past with 12 house runs over a three-game span.

As all the time, Residents Financial institution Park was loud and glad, and it is turning into increasingly more clear that it appears like an enormous home-field benefit for the Phillies. They improved to 11-2 within the postseason there over the previous two years, together with 5-0 this October. — David Schoenfield



Jonah Heim’s 1st postseason HR provides the Rangers a 5-1 lead

Jonah Heim hammers a solo house run to left discipline to offer the Rangers a 5-1 lead over the Astros.


Texas Rangers 5, Houston Astros 4: The defending champion Astros are in a complete heap of hassle. There have been a number of fulcrum-type moments in Sport 2 wherein the Astros appeared to be on the verge of tipping issues again to familiarity, or not less than the form of dynamic we have come to anticipate from this bunch within the playoffs. However starter Nathan Eovaldi, supervisor Bruce Bochy and the Rangers responded each time.

That is what the playoffs are about: profitable the large moments. The spotlight reel for this dynamic was Eovaldi’s Houdini job in getting out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam with no runs scoring. These have been the three highest-leverage plate appearances of Eovaldi’s outing and he gained all of them.

The Astros stored chipping away with the lengthy ball and that created some drama for the late innings. However Bochy went out on a limb to offer Jose Leclerc a shot at a four-out save, which he accomplished regardless of issuing two walks earlier than that first out within the backside of the eighth. As has occurred so many occasions when Bochy makes a postseason name, his gamers reply. The Rangers are up 2-0 with the following three video games slated for Globe Life Area and Max Scherzer taking the hill in Sport 3. — Bradford Doolittle

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