While an immense amount of controversy still surrounds the first World Series won by this iteration of the Houston Astros back in 2017, there is no denying the stranglehold they’ve had on the American League in the years since. On Saturday, they cemented that legacy by winning their second World Series in six years, defeating the Philadelphia Phillies in the process.
The Phillies went on a magical run that began with clinching their first playoff berth since 2011, snapping the longest active streak in MLB. They then swept the higher-seeded St. Louis Cardinals in the first official Wild Card series.
After defeating the Cardinals, many thought their magic would come to an end against the juggernaut Braves in the NLDS. They needed just four games to put the Braves away and notch a meeting with the San Diego Padres in the NLCS. It was another one-loss series there, as it took only five games to clinch the NL pennant and get to the World Series.
And although they had a 2-1 series lead and were the first team to hand the Astros a loss in the 2022 playoffs, the Phillies were outscored 12-3 over the final three games and the Astros returned to their spot atop Major League Baseball.
Since 2017, the Astros have now won two World Series championships, four AL pennants, and have at least appeared in all six American League Championship Series’. They have not lost prior to the ALCS since 2016, when they missed the playoffs at 84-78. They have not had a sub-.500 season since 2014.
They also took out a host of talented teams on their way to the Fall Classic. They played not only the darling Phillies, but the fan favorite Mariners as well. They swept Seattle in perhaps one of the most exciting three-game sweeps in MLB history.
That series included an Astros comeback from down 7-3 and an 18-inning 1-0 win to clinch. They then swept the New York Yankees in the ALCS, a team that — at one time — looked as though they would run away with a championship. Instead, they couldn’t even get one game on the Astros.
Of course, some of their unprecedented run has been marred by the cheating scandal that rocked the baseball world following their 2017 World Series win over the Los Angeles Dodgers. And to some, this scandal is enough to tarnish the entirety of the Astros’ historic run.
But with the closest of eyes watching their every move to ensure no further indiscretions, they have continued to win at the highest level.