Rangers rout Astros in Game 7 of ALCS, earn trip to World Series

Adolis Garcia hit a grand slam in Game 6 and smacked a solo blast in Game 7 of the ALCS.

HOUSTON — The Texas Rangers punched a ticket to their first World Series in more than a decade on Monday, defeating the Houston Astros 11-4 in Game 7 of the American League Championship Series.

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Adolis Garcia’s five-RBI game, including a pair of home runs, along with homers from Corey Seager and Nathaniel Lowe, helped the Rangers win the best-of-seven series 4-3. The victory sends the Rangers to the Fall Classic for the first time since the franchise had back-to-back appearances in the World Series in 2010 and 2011.

Garcia was named the ALCS’ most valuable player.

The Rangers, one of six MLB teams that have never won a World Series, will host Game 1 of the Fall Classic on Friday at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas. They will meet the winner of the National League Championship Series between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Arizona Diamondbacks, who play Game 7 on Tuesday.

Texas manager Bruce Bochy won his fifth pennant, to go with a National League flag with the San Diego Padres in 1998. Bochy also won three NL pennants and World Series titles with the San Francisco Giants in 2010, 2012 and 2014. Bochy’s Giants defeated the Rangers in 2010.

Bochy also became the first manager to win pennants in both leagues. Astros manager Dusty Baker was the ninth. Bochy is the first manager in MLB history to win a league championship series with three different teams.

The ALCS between the two Lone Star State rivals had plenty of drama. Texas won the first two games in Houston, then the Astros returned the favor with three straight wins in Arlington. The Rangers staved off elimination with a 9-2 victory in Game 6 on Sunday, setting up a winner-take-all game Monday night at Houston’s Minute Maid Park.

Houston was attempting to become the first team to reach three straight World Series since the New York Yankees appeared four consecutive times from 1998 to 2001. Houston reached the World Series in four of the last seven seasons, winning the overall title in 2017 and 2022.

But it was not to be on Monday night, as Texas won the final two games of the series by a 20-6 margin.

The Rangers opened fast, scoring three runs at Houston’s Minute Maid Park when Corey Seager homered. Adolis Garcia, whose grand slam clinched the Rangers’ 9-2 victory in Game 6, had an RBI single, and designated hitter Mitch Garver’s run-scoring single made it 3-0.

Garcia has hit home runs in four consecutive playoff games.

Houston’s Jose Abreu cut into the deficit in the bottom half of the first, as his RBI single trimmed the Rangers’ lead to 3-1.

Garcia continued his hot hitting in the fourth inning, as his solo homer extended Texas’ lead to 4-1. But Houston trimmed the deficit again with Alex Bregman’s solo home run in the bottom of the third. It was Bregman’s 19th postseason home run.

Yordan Alvarez followed with a triple, but Rangers starter Max Scherzer got out of the inning when Michael Brantley lined out to shortstop.

Texas added a pair of runs in the fourth inning on Evan Carter’s two-run double with the bases loaded, and Garcia followed with a two-run single to give the Rangers an 8-2 lead.

Nathaniel Lowe made it 10-2 with a two-run homer in the sixth inning.

Alvarez had an RBI single in the bottom of the seventh to cut Texas’ lead to 10-3, but Garcia answered with his second homer of the evening in the top of the eighth to give Texas an 11-3 advantage.

The Astros’ Jose Altuve led off the ninth inning with a solo home run to make it 11-4.

Monday night’s victory continued a whirlwind postseason for the Rangers.

Texas cruised through the first two rounds of the playoffs, sweeping Tampa Bay and Baltimore and held a 2-0 series lead against the defending World Series champion Astros. But their seven-game postseason winning streak ended in Game 3 of the ALCS. Houston took the next three games before the Rangers rebounded to stave off elimination in Game 6.

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