By BEN WALKER (AP Baseball Writer)
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Cristian Javier and Houston’s bullpen combined on just the second no-hitter in World Series history, silencing a booming lineup and boisterous ballpark as the Astros blanked the Philadelphia Phillies 5-0 Wednesday night to even the matchup at two games each.
The only previous no-hitter in the World Series was a perfect game by Don Larsen of the New York Yankees against the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1956.
Javier and three relievers weren’t perfect, but they were close. Plus, they’d done this before: Javier, the starter in a combined no-hitter against the New York Yankees in June, was pulled with a no-hitter in progress after 97 pitches this time.
Bryan Abreu, Rafael Montero and Ryan Pressly each followed with a hitless inning, ensuring this year’s championship will be decided this weekend back at Minute Maid Park.
But first, Game 5 on Thursday night in Philly: Astros ace Justin Verlander will again chase that elusive first World Series win when he faces Noah Syndergaard.
They can only hope to pitch as well as Javier.
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