Isn't it just incredible that after a month and a half of spring training, six months and 162 games of regular season baseball, and two-and-a-half rounds of postseason baseball, everything comes down to one game?
That game is tonight. At Minute Maid Park, the Astros will attempt to win their second-ever world championship. Standing in their way are the Washington Nationals, attempting to win their first. Whoever wins gets it all.
How are you feeling?
Here's what you need to know.
The Starters: Zack Greinke (0-0, 1.93 ERA) vs. Max Scherzer (1-0, 3.60 ERA)
It has to come to this, two of the top starters in baseball over the last decade. The narrative around Greinke was always that he'd fall short around playoff time (that narrative is really thanks to bad postseasons in 2011 and 2017), but he pitched well enough in Game 3, scattering seven hits while striking out six and walking three over four and two-thirds innings. He'll be on just three days' rest, but that's probably better than what Scherzer is about to go through.
The Nationals' ace felt neck pain before his scheduled Game 5 start, so manager Dave Martinez scratched him, raising concerns that Scherzer may not be able to pitch again this postseason. But, in a move that some may think of as miraculous, he says he's good to go for Game 7. It's even sort of cinematic. What's that—feeling sick?
The Weather: Doesn't Matter
We don't have the official report yet, but you got to believe the roof will be closed at the Juice Box. Best to just keep the noise in the park.
Who to Watch: Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Anthony Rendon, Juan Soto
This feels elementary, but in a Game 7, you always look to the stars. These are the guys who typically come through in the big moment.
History: Game 7 is Nuts
Few things in sports are better than Game 7 of the World Series. Tensions couldn't be more palpable, nails couldn't be more bitten, and stomachs couldn't be more rumbly. Some of baseball's greatest moments have come in Game 7, and just in the last 30 years. Among them:
1991: Twins d. Braves. Starting pitcher Jack Morris goes 10 innings while Braves' pitcher John Smoltz pitches eight. A 0-0 tie is broken in the 10th with a walk-off hit by Gene Larkin. A classic.
1997: Marlins d. Indians. With Cleveland up in the ninth, closer Jose Mesa couldn't lock it down. Then, with it tied in the 11th, Edgar Renteria singled home the Marlins's first title after just four years of existence.
2001: Diamondbacks d. Yankees. A pitching duel for the ages (Roger Clemens vs. Curt Schilling) saw the Yankees on top in the ninth. Then oft-flawless closer Mariano Rivera blew it, giving up a tying double and a winning single from Luis Gonzalez.
2014: Giants d. Royals. What could have been. In the ninth inning, down 3-2 with two outs, the Royals' Alex Gordon singled, then hustled to third on an error by Giants center fielder Gregor Blanco. And then a second bobble by another outfielder. Then Gordon stopped. After a foul pop out to win the Giants the series, Royals fans still wonder if Gordon could've scored on that play. It's possible.
2016: Cubs d. Indians. Arguably the greatest game ever played, an incredible roller coaster in which the Cubs took a big lead, but the Indians clawed back and then tied it on a Rajai Davis home run heard 'round the world. After a rain delay (!), the Cubs took the lead in the 10th and won their first title in 108 years.
2017: Astros d. Dodgers. Springer Dinger! The last time we had a Game 7, it was George Springer's two-run home run making it 5-0 and pushing the Astros to their first world championship. We could use a big table-setting shot in this one. And then more runs. And more runs.
Just keep going, and take it back.