Charlie Morton BROKE HIS LEG and Got 3 More Outs in Game 1
Atlanta Braves pitcher Charlie Morton is out for the rest of the World Series after taking a come-backer off the leg from former Astros teammate Yuli Gurriel in Atlanta’s 6-2 win over Houston in game one.
Facing his old team with which he won the 2017 World Series, Morton’s start was cut short after 2⅓ scoreless innings. In the bottom of the second as his team had a 3-0 lead, he took a hard grounder off his lower right leg from Gurriel.
Color commentator John Smoltz had just compared Gurriel’s hitting style to former MLB journeyman Julio Franco.
“Similar style hitting,” said Smoltz of the righty. “Can go to right, Julio loved going to right.”
Gurriel then smacked a 96 mile per hour fastball back at Morton on one hop, hitting his lower right leg. The ball redirected conveniently toward first baseman Freddie Freeman, who fielded the grounder and stepped on the bag for the out.
“Or off the pitcher’s leg for the out” said Joe Buck. “And the Braves hope Morton’s ok. Looks to be.”
Morton proceeded to strike out Chas McCormick and then got Martín Maldonado to line out to first to end the inning. The Braves pitcher did indeed seem to be ok, though at the time he told his catcher Travis d’Arnaud, “That one got me good.”
Trouble manifested in the bottom of the third with the Braves up 5-0. Morton struck out leadoff hitter José Altuve looking on a filthy curveball before coming up lame. After a brief visit from the trainer, Morton exited the game and the World Series.
He had fractured his fibula, presumably on the Gurriel come-backer.
That would mean that Morton threw 16 pitches and got three outs, including two strikeouts after breaking his leg.
The Braves won the game 6-2 to take a 1-0 series lead. Morton’s replacement on the World Series roster has yet to be announced, but his injury almost certainly means Atlanta will need to rely on its bullpen more than it was planning to.
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