Game 6 wasn’t an instant classic, but it brought us what we all wanted: Game 7 – Washington Post

LOS ANGELES — This is what you wanted, right?

This World Series between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Houston Astros was just too superb, too tightly contested and too thrilling, with both slugfests and pitchers’ duels, for it not to go to a Game 7.

“Game 7,” it is said, are the best two words in sports, but when they apply to the pluperfect pandemonium these teams have provided for the last eight days, including a 3-1 Dodgers victory over the Astros and ace Justin Verlander on Tuesday night here at Dodger Stadium, then “Game 7” isn’t too terribly far down the list of best words, or at least most fun words, by any standard.

Game 6 did not provide a classic worth a winter of discussion but rather an exciting, crisply played game with a fine dramatic premise — could a 37-year-old journeyman pitcher named Rich Hill, who has only found his prime years in the last three seasons, find a way to hang with Verlander, a likely future Hall of Famer, long enough to keep his Dodgers within striking range?

Hill managed it almost perfectly, leaving after 4⅔ innings, trailing just 1-0. He got a standing ovation. Thanks to an RBI double by Chris Taylor and a sacrifice fly by Corey Seager in the sixth inning off Verlander, plus an opposite-field solo homer by Joc Pederson in the seventh off reliever Joe Musgrove, the Dodgers got just enough offense.

[Dodgers beat Astros, and an extraordinary World Series fittingly moves to Game 7]

The five-man Dodgers tag team of Hill, Brandon Morrow, Tony Watson, Kenta Maeda and finally Kenley Jansen, who got the last six outs in a row on just 19 pitches, was enough to hold the Astros — who now have 14 homers in this World Series — to one lone run on a George Springer homer.

There’s probably something else you also wanted to see in a Game 7 — a rematch between Yu Darvish and the Astros, who thumped the Dodgers right-hander in Game 3, knocking him out in 1⅔ innings. Of course, that rematch will also have a large side-helping of Yuli Gurriel, the 33-year-old Astros slugger from Cuba who made a racist gesture as well as an anti-Asian remark directed at Darvish, who is Japanese and Iranian.

Gurriel was verbally reprimanded by MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred and suspended for five games — next season, not in this World Series. Dodger Manager Dave Roberts, whose mother is Japanese, was asked his view of the appropriateness of the suspension. Roberts approved it, but only after stressing that what he wanted most was that “there won’t be any asterisks when we win.”

In the baseball culture, that’s about as blunt as it gets. We want him to play, not because of subtleties of ethical debate and suspension precedents, but so we can beat you flat, no excuses.

Waves of boos greeted Gurriel from the moment he was introduced before Game 6, then throughout his four at-bats (with one single). Hill took long walks around the mound before Gurriel’s first two at-bats, letting the crowd have time to work him over, then keep up the booing his whole at-bat.

[Rich Hill gives Dodgers fans all the time they need to boo Astros’ Yuli Gurriel]

“After [Game 3], he contacted us and said, ‘I’d like to meet you in person and apologize,’” Darvish said Tuesday through a translator. “But I told him, ‘You don’t have to do that, because you made a comment, and, like, I’m not that mad.’

“So, like, I really didn’t care much about that.”

You can take that multiple ways. Just expect Darvish will be — motivated.

Ironically, Gurriel may now provide just an extra bit of home-field advantage. Both of these teams are run by stat freaks and know exactly how important home-field edge has been since 1986, when MLB changed its rules and let the home team use its own league’s rules on the designated hitter in World Series games.

Since then, in Games 6 and 7, home teams have a 20-6 record and a comparably huge 135-86 margin in run differential.

The Dodgers sure love being back in L.A., especially now that the temperature at game time is 67 degrees, not 103, as in Game 1. In effect, that pushes the fences back at least 10 feet and may serve as a slight deterrent to the Astros, who are an even better slugging team than Los Angeles.

Dodger Stadium “played big” in Game 6, with several well-hit drives dying short of the walls, including a Corey Seager blast to right field that ended as a sacrifice fly, caught near the top of the fence, rather than a three-run homer. Springer, to open the scoring in the third inning, and Pederson, to add a final insurance run in the seventh, still managed solo homers. You could make these teams play in Anchorage and you still couldn’t keep them in the yard.

“We’re happy to be at home. Tonight was very energizing,” said Roberts, whose team was emotionally drained after losing the epic 13-12 battle in Game 5 in Houston on Sunday. “We worked all year for home-field advantage and here we are.

“It does seem fitting that there’s a Game 7. These are the two best teams in baseball. They mirror one another. And neither one gives in.”

So now we have what we want. Even the Astros say they’re psyched for it, not that they wouldn’t prefer to be flying back to Houston now for a parade. “Big stage. The opportunity to win the World Series tomorrow. That was the message [to the team] right after the game,” Astros Manager A.J. Hinch said. “One of the most exhilarating games you’ll ever play in your life.”

Given how exhausted both of these bullpens now are, you never know who you’ll see on the mound. After Darvish, the Dodgers already say that they will be ready to use Alex Wood, who was sharp in Game 4, in relief as well as Clayton Kershaw, who even did a little throwing in the bullpen during Game 6. As for Jansen, he was so efficient that he is also ready for one inning.

For the Astros, it will be Lance McCullers Jr. starting, followed by several relievers with World Series ERAs that look like a 10-digit telephone number. That’s scary. But so are all those Astros bats that have already ripped what seemed like two dead certain wins out of the Dodgers’ hands.

Can a Game 7 of a World Series live up to such extreme expectations? Well, how’d you like that little Game 7 tussle between the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians last year? Or, two years before that, Madsion Bumgarner against the world?

When a great World Series reaches the Game 7 it deserves, the best advice is, generally, don’t miss it. Even if you have to peek between your eyes.

Read more baseball:

This World Series is coming down to an arms race — to see which arms hold up, that is

‘That’s good to see’: Kirk Cousins liked Dodgers’ Joc Pederson shouting ‘You like that’

At World Series, a racist taunt fuels a stunning episode of civility

Game 5 of the 2017 World Series was not the best ever. But it was an instant classic.

Astros fan rips World Series home run ball from other fan’s hand, throws it onto field

‘Houston Strong’ indeed: A city put to the test has a team up to the task

In Dave Martinez, Nationals have a qualified manager . . . who has never managed

Dave Martinez, long believed to have what it takes, finally has the chance to prove it

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Suspect in deadly Manhattan truck attack is from Uzbekistan, sources say – CNN

After crashing the truck into a school bus, the suspect exited the vehicle while displaying imitation firearms and was shot in the abdomen by a police officer, according to the NYPD.
The suspect, a 29-year-old man, is in police custody and was taken to a hospital for treatment, officials said.
He was identified by two law enforcement sources familiar with the investigation as Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov. The suspect is from the central Asian nation of Uzbekistan and came to the United States in 2010, sources told CNN.
The incident is being investigated as terrorism, officials said. Witnesses reported the suspect was yelling “Allahu Akbar,” according to four law enforcement sources. The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force is taking over the lead of the investigation.
“This was an act of terror, and a particularly cowardly act of terror,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said, “aimed at innocent civilians, aimed at people going about their lives who had no idea what was about to hit them.”
An image taken from Twitter shows what appears to be the suspect, according to a senior law enforcement official.An image taken from Twitter shows what appears to be the suspect, according to a senior law enforcement official.
Here are the latest developments in the attack:
• The suspect is out of surgery, a law enforcement source told CNN. Before going into surgery, law enforcement was able to talk to him, the source said. It is not known if he told them anything.
• A Tampa, Florida, address is connected to the suspect. Investigators are also looking into a possible connection to New Jersey, the sources said.
• The man rented the truck in New Jersey on Tuesday, a person briefed on the investigation told CNN.
• President Donald Trump tweeted that the incident “looks like another attack by a very sick and deranged person.” In a later tweet, he wrote, “My thoughts, condolences and prayers to the victims and families of the New York City terrorist attack. God and your country are with you!”
• A Belgian national was a victim of the attack, Didier Reynders, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister for Belgium, said on Twitter. “I am deeply saddened to announce a Belgian victim in Manhattan – I express my condolences to the family and friends,” he tweeted from his verified account.
• New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo directed One World Trade Center to be lit in red, white and blue in honor of freedom and democracy, his office said.

Rented truck used

Authorities think it is an act of terror because the driver said something moments after leaving the truck and the method of the attack were consistent with other terrorist attacks, New York Police Commissioner James P. O’Neill said. Vehicles have been used as weapons in a number of terrorist attacks in recent years, including in deadly incidents in Nice, France, and London.
The suspect, driving in a Home Depot rental truck, hopped a curb at West Houston Street and drove south on the bike path on the west side of West Side Highway in Lower Manhattan for several blocks, officials said. A pellet gun and a paintball gun were recovered from the scene, officials said.
A suspect drove a white truck down a heavily trafficked bike path in New York City on Thursday.A suspect drove a white truck down a heavily trafficked bike path in New York City on Thursday.
Just after the incident, news footage showed several mangled bicycles on the popular bike path as medics tended to the wounded in the background.
Six people were declared dead at the scene and two were pronounced dead at the hospital. At lease 11 others were transported to the hospital with serious but non-life-threatening injuries, according to New York Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro.
No other suspects are being sought, the NYPD said.
A spokesman for Home Depot confirmed one of the company’s rental trucks was part of an incident in lower Manhattan and said the company is “cooperating with authorities” in the investigation.

Witness accounts

News footage showed crowds of spectators — some capturing the scene with cellphone cameras — gathered behind police lines. A white Home Depot truck with the front end smashed was also visible.
Eugene Duffy said he had just left work at Pier 26 and was waiting on the light to cross West Street when he heard a scream. He thought it might have been a Halloween prank but he said the scream was bloodcurdling.
“I look down and I see a white pickup truck a couple of more blocks down in the bike path,” he said. “Automatically, I know something’s wrong. Then, as I go down more toward where the girl is screaming, I see two gentlemen laying there and they have tire tracks marked across their bodies. You could tell they both weren’t here.”
He continued to walk closer to the scene. Gunshots rang out. He saw cops ducking for cover. A yellow school bus was smashed nearby. Cops descended on the area.
“I thought automatically, this area, I thought it was terrorism,” he said.
Parts of mangled bikes are strewn on the ground in Manhattan on Tuesday.Parts of mangled bikes are strewn on the ground in Manhattan on Tuesday.
Michael Corbin, the assistant real estate manager for District Council 37, the city’s largest public employees union, was standing outside the union’s lower Manhattan offices attending to a woman who slipped and fell on the sidewalk.
“The first responder to the event was a counterterrorism officer,” he said. “We were attending to the victim, getting her onto a stretcher and, at that moment, we heard gunshots. I recalled hearing five gunshots in quick succession and immediately the officer … left to investigate the situation from the direction we heard the noise coming from.”
Another witness, Ramon Cruz, described what he saw.
“What I saw was that the driver — he didn’t look like he was bleeding,” said Cruz. “He was dragging his foot. He looks frustrated, panicked, confused. People are running past me, saying, ‘He’s got a gun. He’s got a gun.’ I didn’t see any gun.
“It was a white pickup truck. He looked pretty bad without bleeding or anything like that. I didn’t see him hit anybody. All I heard was the impact of a crash.”
Tuesday afternoon on Twitter, a user posted an image of a person lying on the ground near the scene of an incident near West & Chambers Streets in Manhattan.

CNN’s Jessica Schneider, David Shortell, Steve Almasy, Karen Smith and Intisar Seraaj contributed to this report.

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One person in custody, multiple fatalities in Manhattan – CNN

The driver exited the vehicle with what appeared to be a gun and was shot by police, the sources added. The individual is in police custody and is being taken to the hospital for treatment.
As many as six people are dead, according to two senior law enforcement sources on the scene, They added that it appears to be deliberate act.
No others are being sought, the NYPD said. Police said to expect “many emergency personnel” in the area of Chambers Street and West Street on the lower west side of Manhattan.
The source said police are considering terrorism as part of the investigation.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo both said they are heading to the scene.
News footage showed crowds of spectators — some capturing the scene with cellphone cameras — gathered behind police lines. A white Home Depot truck with the front end smashed in was also visible.
A wrecked pickup truck on the street near the scene in Manhattan. A wrecked pickup truck on the street near the scene in Manhattan.
Parts of several mangled bicycles littered the popular bike path along the West Side Highway and the Hudson River, as medics tended to the wounded in the background.
“What I saw was that the driver — he didn’t look like he was bleeding,” said Ramon Cruz, a witness. “He was dragging his foot. He looks frustrated, panicked, confused. People are running past me, saying, ‘He’s got a gun. He’s got a gun.” I didn’t see any gun.
It was a white pickup truck. He looked pretty bad without bleeding or anything like that. I didn’t see him hit anybody. All I heard was the impact of a crash.”
Tuesday afternoon on Twitter, a user posted an image of a person lying on the ground near the scene of an incident near West & Chambers Streets in Manhattan.

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White House wants credit for Papadopoulos arrest – Politico

Donald Trump is pictured. | AP Photo

President Donald Trump called a former campaign adviser who reached a plea deal with special counsel Robert Mueller a “low level volunteer.” | Evan Vucci/AP Photo

Sarah Huckabee Sanders claimed that Mueller’s probe brought down Papadopoulos only because of White House cooperation.

The White House on Tuesday sought to take credit for the arrest of a former Trump campaign aide who had repeated contacts with Russia-linked officials offering “dirt” on Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton — marking the latest damage control move as the Russia probe intensifies.

President Donald Trump and other White House allies had so far sought to downplay the role of George Papadopoulos, a campaign foreign policy adviser, whose plea deal was made public by special counsel Robert Mueller on Monday, the same day two top Trump campaign officials were indicted on charges unrelated to the campaign.

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Trump derided him Tuesday morning as a “liar” while former campaign aide Michael Caputo dismissed him as “the coffee boy.”

Press secretary Sarah Sanders went further Tuesday afternoon, claiming the White House and the campaign deserved credit for helping Mueller’s team build its case that Papadopoulos had lied to the FBI about his contacts.

“Papadopoulos is an example of actually somebody doing the wrong thing while the president’s campaign did the right thing,” Sanders said. “All of his emails were voluntarily provided to the special counsel by the campaign, and that is what led to the process and the place that we’re in right now is the campaign fully cooperating and helping with that. What Papadopoulos did was lie and that’s on him and not on the campaign and we can’t speak to that.”

Trump continued trying to redirect the heat toward Democrats.

“The biggest story yesterday, the one that has the Dems in a dither, is Podesta running from his firm. What he know [sic] about Crooked Dems is earth shattering,” Trump wrote on Twitter later Tuesday, alluding to the