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Astros advance to World Series

Garcia, Alvarez help oust Red Sox

HOUSTON — Rookie Luis Garcia showed the poise of an October ace, MVP Yordan Alvarez stayed hot at the plate and the Houston Astros earned yet another trip to the World Series, beating the Boston Red Sox 5-0 Friday night in Game 6 of the AL Championship Series.

The Astros advanced to the World Series for the third time in five seasons. They won the championship in 2017, a crown tainted by the team’s sign-stealing scandal, before losing to the Washington Nationals in seven games in 2019.

Manager Dusty Baker’s team will open the World Series on Tuesday night, either at Dodger Stadium or home against Atlanta. The Braves lead Los Angeles 3-2 in the NL Championship Series going into Game 6 Saturday night.

“There’s four more wins on the board out there,” the 72-year-old Baker. “There’s four more wins you’ve got to get.”

Garcia pitched no-hit ball into the sixth inning, leaving to a huge ovation with two outs after a triple by Kiki Hernández. It was an impressive bounce-back performance for the 24-year-old, who started Game 2 and gave up a grand slam in the first inning before leaving with no outs in the second because of discomfort in his right knee.

Alvarez continued his scorching streak, a year after watching at home after surgery to both knees as the Astros came one game shy of reaching the World Series. The slugging designated hitter had four hits, including a triple and two doubles. He led a Game 5 win with three hits and three RBIs.

Alvarez hit an ALCS-record .522 (12 for 23) with one homer, three doubles, the triple and six RBIs in Houston’s six-game victory. He got nine hits in his last 13 at-bats.

Catcher Martin Maldonado made the defensive play of the game on a strikeout-throwout double play to end the seventh with Houston ahead 2-0.

It will be Baker’s second trip to the Fall Classic as a manager and first since leading the San Francisco Giants to the NL pennant in 2002. As a player, he made three trips with the Dodgers, winning it all in 1981.

Scherzer scratched

ATLANTA — The Los Angeles Dodgers say Max Scherzer will not start Game 6 of the NL Championship Series against the Atlanta Braves on Saturday night.

The Dodgers made the announcement on Friday night. They did not say why Scherzer will not start and did not say which pitcher will take his place.

Atlanta leads the series 3-2.

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