Should the Astros continue their revival with two more wins – with a potential game 7 on Wednesday – they would become the first team since the 2016 Chicago Cubs to rally from a 3-1 deficit and win the Fall Classic.
Such a turnaround would translate into a devastating collapse of the Braves, but manager Brian Snitker has seen no sign of his players breaking under the pressure.
“They’re having fun playing this thing,” Snitker said.
“They’re in the World Series. My God, as I told them, you’re never guaranteed this, so enjoy it.
“There’s no pressure. Like I say, there’s pressure in NLCS when you try to get here. We all want to end this, but there’s no pressure.
“We are one of two teams left in our sport and there is no one – I do not know these guys have – I have sensed some kind of pressure from these guys internally.
“The only time I hear about it is in this room. In that room out there, I never hear it.”
‘We still have work to do’
Baker – still looking for an intangible championship despite taking all five teams he has trained for the playoffs – again saw himself staring down into the barrel of heartache in match 5, but his decision to change the strike order proved to be an inspired decision and kept his dream alive.
Shortstop Carlos Correa, bumped up to third place in the battle order, came through with three hits and a pair of RBIs, while first baseman Yuli Gurriel, who moved up to fifth after hitting seventh in match 4, had three own hits and scored two race.
Now in his 24th season as manager, a comeback victory in the series would mark an adventurous end to the veteran’s hunt for the title, but Baker is taking things one step at a time.
“The guys are happy, but they were not really happy,” Baker said of the team after winning Game 5.
“They know we still have work to do, and like when we – you want to go up there and win three.
“When it did not happen in game 1 and game 2, you are behind the octopus, then you change your rallying cry that we just want to return to H-city.
“We want to get home again. Now our whole thing is to win match one, which is game 6, and then put ourselves in a position to win match 7.”
The match between the Astros and Braves starts at 20:09 ET in Houston.