Houston Astros improbable run finally comes to an end

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 17: Blake Taylor #62 of the Houston Astros is congratulated by teammates Aledmys Diaz #16, Carlos Correa #1 and Martin Maldonado #15 as he leaves the game during the eighth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays in Game Seven of the American League Championship Series at PETCO Park on October 17, 2020 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 17: Blake Taylor #62 of the Houston Astros is congratulated by teammates Aledmys Diaz #16, Carlos Correa #1 and Martin Maldonado #15 as he leaves the game during the eighth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays in Game Seven of the American League Championship Series at PETCO Park on October 17, 2020 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /
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The Houston Astros incredible run through the postseason has reached its conclusion after falling to the Tampa Bay Rays in Game Seven.

As the Houston Astros entered the playoffs, they were essentially the laughing stock of the game. The Astros had finished the regular season with a 29-31 record, a team that had zero business being in the postseason, but had advanced due to the rules governing the expanded playoffs. It was expected that the Astros would be swiftly eliminated when the postseason began.

But then, once the games started, someone forgot to tell the Astros that they did not belong. Houston swept the Twins, extending Minnesota’s streak of playoff futility to 18 games. Then, the Astros manhandled the A’s, slugging their way to a series victory in four games.

However, it seemed as though their luck had run out. The Astros, the worst team in the AL bracket, were now matched up with the top seeded Tampa Bay Rays. For the first three games, the series appeared to be the mismatch it was expected to be, as the Rays were on the verge of sweeping Houston.

light. More Astros. The power of Baker's faith

But again, someone forgot to tell the Astros that they were done. Buoyed by Dusty Baker‘s faith in his players, Houston came back and won Game Four. Then Carlos Correa called his walk-off homer in Game Five. Another victory in Game Six, when Kevin Cash decided to pull Blake Snell after four plus innings, left the Astros on the verge of an incredible comeback.

Even when they were down 4-0 in the top of the eighth, the Astros kept coming. They had loaded the bases with two outs, bringing Correa to the plate. He delivered again, with a two run single to cut the lead in half. However, their magic had run out, as the Rays held on to advance.

That failure to win Game Seven should not take away from what the Astros accomplished. They were devastated by injuries all season, losing the defending Cy Young winner in Justin Verlander, the 2019 AL Rookie of the Year in Yordan Alvarez, and their All Star closer in Roberto Osuna. Baker managed to take a cast of rookies as his pitching staff, and brought Houston to within a game of the World Series.

It is easy to mock the Astros. There is the debacle that was AstroGate, with the trash can jokes writing themselves. Their record, and frankly, a look at their pitching staff, says they should have never sniffed the postseason this year. But the Astros fought as hard as they possibly could, almost clawing their way to another American League pennant.

Next. Astros Mount Rushmore. dark

The Houston Astros incredible run through the playoffs is over, but it is a run that will not be soon forgotten.