The Atlanta Braves are one win away from the franchise's first world championship since 1995.
Highlighted by back-to-back 7th inning homers from shortstop Dansby Swanson and a pinch-hitting Jorge Soler, Atlanta edged the visiting Astros 3-2 on Saturday night. The Braves can capture the crown in front of their home crowd on Sunday night.
Houston had most of the momentum in the game's early innings, but failed to capitalize on scoring opportunities, ultimately stranding 11 baserunners, and Astros hitters were 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position.
Atlanta starter Dylan Lee registered just a single out, handing the ball over to Kyle Wright with the bases loaded in the first inning. But Wright allowed only one of his inherited runners to cross, and gave the Braves a solid 4.2 innings of work in relief. A solo shot by Jose Altuve in the fourth inning was Wright's sole miscue of significance, as Houston held only a slim 2-0 lead through five innings.
Star third baseman Austin Riley got the Braves on the board in the 6th with an RBI single to left. The 24-year-old also turned in a key defensive play in the second inning, robbing Altuve of an RBI on a hard-sinking liner.
After Swanson and Soler's homers in the 7th, Altuve was again victimized by the Braves defense, as left fielder Eddie Rosario ran down a blast at the warning track in the top of the 8th to preserve Atlanta's 3-2 lead.
Braves closer Will Smith pitched a perfect 9th inning, forcing Yordan Alvarez to ground out to first baseman Freddie Freeman for the final out of the night. Atlanta reliever Tyler Matzek earned the victory for the Braves, while Houston's Cristian Javier -- who allowed both Swanson and Soler's dingers -- suffered the loss.
The Braves are now 7-0 at home this postseason. An eighth win at Truist Park on Sunday would deliver the franchise just its second title since moving to Atlanta.