2023 MLB playoffs: LCS Phillies, Astros, takeaways, and more

2023 MLB playoffs: LCS Phillies, Astros, takeaways, and more

espnOctober 20, 2023 at 11:41 PM ET4 minutes to read

Jose Altuve crushes the go-ahead 3-run home run in the ninth inning

Jose Altuve comes up with a huge go-ahead 3-run homer in the 9th to give the Astros a 5-4 lead.

Day 6 of the MLB Championship Series did not disappoint.

In a tense match marked by a fight to vacate the seats, The Texas Rangers suffered a devastating loss on Friday, as Jose Altuve scored a go-ahead three-run home run in the ninth inning to secure a 5-4 win for the Houston Astros. The ALCS will return to Houston with the Astros one win away from returning to the World Series to defend their title.

The National League didn’t disappoint, as the Arizona Diamondbacks beat the Philadelphia Phillies in a thrilling NLCS Game 4 to tie the series at second place.

Relive your day with quick information from both games, plus in-game updates and analysis from the field.

Key links: Full qualifying schedule and results

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Astros 5, Rangers 4: No team is better at ignoring outside noise, overcoming adversity and coming out on top than these stars, and that was never more evident than in the closing stages of Game 5 of the American League Championship Series. Adelis Garcia put the Rangers ahead with a three-run homer in the sixth inning, then sparked a bench-clearing incident after being hit by a fastball on the first pitch two innings later, going after Astros catcher Martin Maldonado in the process.

The Astros appear to be imploding. It looked like the Rangers would be one win away from the pennant. Then Houston stepped up. Yanner Diaz led off the ninth with a single, John Singleton drew a walk with a bunt, and then Jose Altuve, playing in his 100th career postseason game the night before, delivered a three-run homer that gave his team the advantage. Lead again. The Astros — in the ALCS for the seventh straight year, losers of the first two games of this series at home — are one win away from their fifth trip to the World Series since 2017. Amazing. -Alden Gonzalez

Diamondbacks 6, Phillies 5: The Phillies are a machine. The Phillies are unbeatable. The Phillies will make a rough run to the World Series. This is what it looked like 48 hours ago. And then the Diamondbacks did what they’ve done all season. They are not the most talented team. They don’t throw the hardest, hit the cleanest, or hit the best. But they know how to win. After taking a 6-5 win in Game 4 on Friday night, the NLCS is now tied.

The fifth game is on Saturday. Both teams’ bullpenes were destroyed – the Diamondbacks’ after needing it for nine innings, the Phillies’ because it couldn’t get out. The good thing is that it’s Zach Wheeler vs. Zach Gallen. One of the best matchups we’ll have all season, in the first game of what is now a best-of-three matchup going into the World Series. –Jeff Passan

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