World Series notebook: Home team finally wins at home as Astros end five-game home losing streak in Series

Astros

Houston Astros relief pitcher Kendall Graveman and catcher Martin Maldonado celebrates after Game 2 of baseball’s World Series between the Houston Astros and the Atlanta Braves Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021, in Houston. The Astros won 7-2, to tie the series 1-1. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

HOUSTON (AP) — The home team has finally won another game in its own ballpark in the World Series.

The Houston Astros ended a five-game losing streak in Series games at Minute Maid Park with a 7-2 win over the Atlanta Braves in Game 2. It is the first time for a home ballpark winner since 2018.

All six games of last year’s World Series were played at a neutral site in Arlington, Texas, when all postseason games were played in a bubble because of the pandemic. Washington beat Houston in a seven-game Series in 2019 when the visiting team won every game for the first time.

Playing his song: Urquidy 1st Mexican with 2 Series wins

Houston Astros starting pitcher Jose Urquidy throws during the first inning in Game 2 of baseball’s World Series between the Houston Astros and the Atlanta Braves Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

Looking calm and poised a night after overamped rotation-mate Framber Valdez was chased early, José Urquidy gave the Astros’ bats a chance to break out.

Houston rode a four-run second inning to a 7-2 win over Atlanta that tied the World Series at one game apiece.

Urquidy started 15 of 21 batters with strikes in getting the win. He allowed two runs and six hits in five innings with seven strikeouts, throwing 55 of 74 pitches for strikes.

World Series opener viewers up 17.5% over last year’s low

Atlanta’s 6-2 victory over Houston in Game 1 of the World Series drew an average of 10,811,000 viewers on Fox, up 17.5% from the record low of 9,195,000 for the Los Angeles Dodgers’ opening 8-3 win over Tampa Bay last year.

The Braves-Astros number was the second-lowest total to start a Series.

Fans arrive at Minute Maid Park where the roof on the stadium was open for Game 2 of baseball’s World Series between the Houston Astros and the Atlanta Braves Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021, in Houston. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

Tuesday night’s game averaged a 6.1 rating, 15 share on Fox. Fox said it averaged 11,077,000 viewers combined for Fox, Fox Deportes for Spanish-language coverage and Fox’s streaming apps. The game was the most-streamed World Series opener at 273,619, an increase of 82%.

Before last year, the low for a Game 1 had been San Francisco’s 7-1 win over Kansas City on Oct. 21, 2014, viewed by an average of 12,191,000 on a Tuesday night.

Last year’s Series, played at the neutral site of Arlington, Texas, because of the pandemic, received an average television rating 32% below the previous World Series low. The six games on Fox last year averaged a 5.2 rating, 12 share and 9,785,000 viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research. The previous low was a 7.6 rating, 12 share and 12,660,000 viewers for the San Francisco Giants’ four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers in 2012.

The rating is the percentage of television households tuned in to a broadcast. The share is the percentage viewing a telecast among those households with TVs on at the time.

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