Rangers Return Home with 2-0 Lead in ALCS; Phillies Dominate D-backs in NLCS Opener



Rangers Return Home with 2-0 Lead in ALCS; Phillies Dominate D-backs in NLCS Opener

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Certainly, here’s a rewritten version of the article

“The current World Series betting favorites are the Texas Rangers. Bryce Harper celebrated his 31st birthday by smashing the first pitch he saw into the seats, contributing to the Philadelphia Phillies’ 5-3 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks in Game 1 of the NLCS on Monday night.

In a spontaneous celebration, Harper held up three fingers on his left hand and one on his right, mimicking blowing out candles on a cake as he crossed the plate. He also walked, scored twice, and knocked in two runs, hitting his 10th postseason homer with the Phillies.

Zack Wheeler’s eight strikeouts in six innings propelled the reigning NL champions to their seventh Game 1 victory in the last two postseasons.

The Arizona Diamondbacks suffered their first defeat of the playoffs after securing five consecutive wins against the Brewers and Dodgers. Merrill Kelly is set to start Game 2 for the Diamondbacks on Tuesday night against Aaron Nola.

Meanwhile, in Houston, the Texas Rangers took a 2-0 lead in the ALCS by defeating Framber Valdez and the Astros 5-4, with Jonah Heim’s homer and Nathan Eovaldi’s six effective innings leading the charge.

Despite not feeling well, Yordan Alvarez’s two solo homers made him the sixth player in MLB history with two multi-homer games in one postseason.

As per FanDuel Sportsbook, the current World Series betting odds list the Rangers as favorites at +110, followed by the Phillies (+140), Astros (+750), and Diamondbacks (+800).

In other news, Bryce Harper expressed his desire to represent Team USA in the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics, emphasizing the importance of MLB players participating in the Olympics to grow the game internationally.

Furthermore, General Manager Kim Ng, who made history as the first female GM in the four major North American professional sports leagues, is departing from the Miami Marlins. Ng declined her mutual option after three seasons with the team.

Certainly, here’s the revised version

Time for a Change? After a five-day break, the top four playoff seeds suffered a combined 2-6 record on their home fields in the division round.

Two of the top seeds, the Baltimore Orioles and Dodgers, were swiftly eliminated in three-game sweeps. The Atlanta Braves, who secured 104 wins during the regular season, faced a four-game defeat by the Philadelphia Phillies.

We did everything we could during the break, preparing ourselves as best as possible,” remarked Braves manager Brian Snitker. “I don’t think we could have done anything more or been more thorough in our preparations during the time off.”

Yet, the extended rest seemed to provide little advantage to these teams. This raises the question: Is it time to bid farewell to extended breaks?

It’s not an ideal situation, Snitker admitted. “I’m not using it as an excuse for our performance. Look at the Astros; the break didn’t affect them. They maintained their momentum throughout.”

I’ve never been a fan of extended breaks for a team,” he continued. “I believe one day off is sufficient. But it is what it is, and we need to find a way to adapt.

PROMISING ROOKIE Evan Carter has been a standout performer for the Texas team, boasting a .350 average with four doubles, one home run, and three RBIs in seven playoff games—all resulting in wins. The 21-year-old outfielder also displayed remarkable patience, drawing seven walks, contributing to an impressive .536 on-base percentage and .700 slugging percentage.

A PHILADELPHIA CELEBRATION If the Phillies triumph in the World Series, expect to see Calum Scott in the Broad Street parade, proudly sporting the team’s jersey. The British singer, known for his hit song about loneliness and heartbreak, was honored by the team for his contribution in making “Dancing On My Own” a staple in the Citizens Bank Park postseason soundtrack.

Scott expressed his enthusiasm, stating, If they win the World Series, count me in. I might need to be restrained at that point.

WHERE TO WATCH TBS will broadcast the NLCS, while Fox and FS1 are covering the ALCS.




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