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Playoff Gameday Thread #26: This is the end

Game 7.

Photo by Simon Hayter/Getty Images

5:20 pm: Houston Astros @ Los Angeles Dodgers (3-3)

Today's Lineups

HOUSTON ASTROS LOS ANGELES DODGERS
George Springer - CF Chris Taylor - CF
Alex Bregman - 3B Corey Seager - SS
Jose Altuve - 2B Justin Turner - 3B
Carlos Correa - SS Cody Bellinger - 1B
Yulieski Gurriel - 1B Yasiel Puig - RF
Brian McCann - C Joc Pederson - LF
Marwin Gonzalez - LF Logan Forsythe - 2B
Josh Reddick - RF Austin Barnes - C
Lance McCullers - RHP Yu Darvish - RHP

Lance McCullers (RHP, 7-4, 4.25) vs. Yu Darvish (RHP, 10-12, 3.86). Because, of course, the season coming down to McCullers and Darvish is exactly what we all expected on Opening Day... As you’d expect, this is a rematch of Game 3, but I wouldn’t necessarily use that as much of a guide. After all, Game 5 was a rematch of Game 1, and Game 6 of Game 2 - neither of those quite went the same way, the second time around! This will be the Astros’ 180th meaningful game of the season, tying the all-time record: it’s also November baseball, which is still something relatively rare. Just not as rare as it was the first time it happened, in the delayed 2001 World Series.

Obviously, this is going to be one of those games where absolutely anything can happen, with all 25 men on both rosters knowing there is no tomorrow for the 2017 baseball season. If Darvish struggles, expect Clayton Kershaw to come in out of the bullpen to try for a Bumgarner - but his form this post-season has been iffy, with a 4.35 ERA, so that might not be for the best, especially on two days’ rest. Who knows what will decide this game: hopefully, it’s a great play of some kind, rather than an error. Especially if it’s a great play by the Astros. :)