Elias Says: October 28, 2017

Peacock saves Astros

Brad Peacock earned a save in the Astros’ win in Game 3 of the World Series by getting the last 11 outs of the game. Peacock is the third pitcher in major-league history to earn a save of at least 11 outs in a World Series game. Madison Bumgarner earned a five-inning save for the Giants in Game 7 of the 2014 World Series against the Royals and Steve Howe finished off Game 6 by getting the last 11 outs of the 1981 Fall Classic in the Dodgers’ win over the Yankees.

Lance McCullers earned a 12-out save in the Astros’ series-clinching win over the Yankees in the ALCS. The Astros are the first team to have two saves of at least 11 outs in one postseason since saves became an official statistic in 1969.

Peacock did not allow a hit in his 3⅔ innings pitched. That matched the most innings pitched without allowing a hit for a pitcher who earned a save in any postseason game. Ken Clay saved Game 1 of the 1978 ALCS for the Yankees with a 3⅔ hitless innings against the Royals.

Peacock, who never saved a game in the regular season or postseason in his major-league career prior to Game 3, is the sixth pitcher since saves became an official statistic in 1969 whose first career save came in the World Series. The others to do this were Catfish Hunter for the Athletics in Game 1 in 1974, Brian Anderson for the Indians in Game 4 in 1997, Mark Buehrle for the White Sox in Game 3 in 2005, Madison Bumgarner for the Giants in Game 7 in 2014 and Mike Montgomery for the Cubs in Game 7 in 2016.

There’s no place like home

The Astros have won all seven of their home games in the 2017 postseason. That matches the record for the longest home winning streak within in one postseason in major-league history. The Phillies won seven straight home playoff games in 2008 as did the Royals in 2015.

McCullers K’s Bellinger three times

Lance McCullers struck out Cody Bellinger three times in Game 3 of the World Series, his only three strikeouts of the game. That’s the most strikeouts in a game for a pitcher who struck the same batter every time.

McCann three hits from the ninth spot

Brian McCann rapped out three hits, all singles, from the ninth spot in the batting order for the Astros in Game 3. McCann is the third player over the last 30 years to have three hits from the ninth spot in the batting order in a World Series game. The other two players to do this since 1988 were Orel Hershiser for the Dodgers in Game 2 in 1988 (3-for-3) and Jose Vizcaino for the Yankees in Game 1 of the Subway Series in 2000 (4-for-6, including the game-winning hit in the bottom of the 12th inning).

Harden and Gordon scoring in bunches for Rockets

James Harden scored 27 points and Eric Gordon pitched in with 26 points in the Rockets’ win over the Hornets on Friday night. Harden has scored 159 points in the Rockets’ five games this season, Gordon has scored 149 points. It marks the second time in franchise history that the Rockets had two players score 140 or more points over the team’s first five games of the season. It also happened in 1968-69 when Elvin Hayes (161 points in the team’s first five games) and Don Kojis (144) accomplished it.

KP puts up 30

Kristaps Porzingis scored 30 points and grabbed nine rebounds in the Knicks’ win over the Nets, their city rivals. Porzingis has scored 30 or more points in three of the four Knicks games this season, having scored 31 points against the Thunder in the season opener and 33 points against the Pistons in game two of the season. The only other player in Knicks history to score 30 or more points in three of the team’s first four games of the season was Willie Naulls in 1960-61. Naulls scored 37, 34, 18 and 33 points in New York’s first four games that season.

An efficient 25 points for Fournier

Evan Fournier scored 25 points by making ten of his twelve shots from the field in Orlando’s win over the previously undefeated Spurs. Fournier is the first Magic player to score at least 25 points in a game while shooting over 80 percent from the field since JJ Redick did it at Detroit on January 22, 2013. Reddick scored 26 points and shot 9-for-10 from the field in that game.

The Magic have scored at least 114 points in all five games this season, the longest such streak to start a season for any NBA team since the Pistons scored that many points in each of their first eight games of the 1985-86 season. Isiah Thomas, Bill Laimbeer and Kelly Tripucka led that Pistons team.

TWolves starters score 105 points

The starting five for the Timberwolves, led by 33 points from Karl-Anthony Towns, scored 105 of the team’s 119 points (88.2%) in their win over the Thunder on Friday night. It was the ninth time since the start of last season that Minnesota’s starters scored 88 percent or more of the team’s points in a game. No other team has more than six such games over that span. The Wizards (six), Cavaliers (four) and Trail Blazers (four) are next in that category.

Oscar is no slouch

Oscar Dansk stopped all 32 shots and improved his record to 3-0 in the Knight’s 7-0 win over the Avalanche. Dansk is the first goaltender in the NHL’s expansion era to earn a win in each of his first three games and do it with a team in its first season in the league.

It was the fourth time in NHL history that a team scored seven or more goals in a shutout victory in its first season in the NHL. It happened twice in the NHL’s first season, 1917-18, and once by the original Winnipeg Jets, who beat the Hartford Whalers, 7-0 on March 26, 1980.

Bratt wins it in a shootout

Rookie Jesper Bratt scored the deciding goal in the shootout which earned the Devils a 5–4 victory over the Senators, after New Jersey squandered a 4–2 lead in the final two minutes of the third period. Bratt is only the fourth rookie ever to score the deciding goal in a shootout for the Devils. The other New Jersey rookies to do that were Zach Parise (Jan. 21, 2006 vs. Islanders), Travis Zajac (March 24, 2007 at Florida) and Adam Henrique (Dec. 8, 2011 vs. Ottawa).

Bobrovsky earns wins in OT

Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 29 of 30 shots including two in overtime in the Blue Jackets’ win over the Jets. Bobrovsky has won all three of his games that were decided in overtime this season. Last season, Bobrovsky was 7-3 in such games, tying Corey Crawford and Carey Price for the second-most overtime victories by an NHL goaltender, behind Peter Budaj, who was an amazing 10-0 in overtime games, all for the Kings.

Rinne stops 43 of 44 shots

Pekka Rinne stopped all but one of the Blackhawks’ 44 shots on goal in his 2–1 victory in Chicago on Friday. It’s only the fourth time that a Predators goaltender has won a regular-season game in which he made at least 43 saves and allowed no more than one goal. Rinne did that once before, in a 4–1 win against the Blue Jackets in Nashville on April 8, 2011 in which he turned aside 44 Columbus shots. The other Predators goaltenders with wins of that kind are Mike Dunham (Oct. 19, 2000, 2–1 in OT at Detroit, 44 saves) and Dan Ellis (with a 43-save 2–0 shutout at Columbus.)