Javier, ‘pen hold Phils hitless through 8 innings in Game 4

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Cristian Javier, Bryan Abreu and Rafael Montero held the Philadelphia Phillies hitless through eight innings in Game 4 of the World Series on Wednesday night, and the Houston Astros led 5-0 after knocking out Aaron Nola in a five-run fifth.

With the Astros trailing 2-1 in the best-of-seven series, Javier pitched six innings and allowed only a pair of baserunners. He walked Bryce Harper leading off the second and No. 9 hitter Brandon Marsh with one out in the third.

A 25-year-old right-hander, Javier struck out nine, including five in a row in the fourth and fifth. He threw 63 of 97 pitches for strikes, including 70 fastballs, 25 sliders and a pair of knuckle-curves.

Abreu struck out J.T. Realmuto, Bryce Harper and Nick Castellanos in succession on 15 pitches in the seventh, throwing at up to 99.7 mph.

Montero got three straight outs in the eighth on 10 pitches, extending the streak of consecutive batters retired to 17. Jean Segura lined out to right field to end the inning.

On June 25 at Yankee Stadium, Javier combined with Héctor Neris and Ryan Pressly to no-hit New York. Javier threw 115 pitches over seven innings and the relievers combined for 35 more.

Javier has allowed one run in his last 38 innings, including the final month of the regular season.

Don Larsen of the Yankees pitched the only no-hitter in World Series history, a perfect game against the Brooklyn Dodgers in Game 5 in 1956. The only other postseason no-hitter was by Phillies ace Roy Halladay in a 2010 NL Division Series opener against Cincinnati, also at Citizens Bank Park.

Philadelphia was no-hit by the New York Mets at Citi Field on April 29, when Tylor Megill went five innings and Drew Smith, Joely Rodríguez, Seth Lugo and Edwin Díaz finished in relief.

Houston chased Nola with consecutive singles by Chas McCormick, Jose Altuve and Jeremy Peña that loaded the bases with no outs in the fifth.

José Alvarado hit Yordan Alvarez on the right hip with his first pitch to force in a run and got ahead 0-2 on Alex Bregman before he lined a 100.7 mph fastball to the opposite field, into the right-field corner for a 3-0 lead.

Kyle Tucker followed with a sacrifice fly and Yuli Gurriel added a run-scoring single.

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