World Series Game 1 FAQ (Friday, 8 p.m. ET/7 CT on FOX)

It’s Bryce’s first dance and Dusty’s latest chance. It’s an October upstart trying to take down the established October elite.

And it all gets started Friday night, deep in the heart of Texas.

• World Series Game 1, presented by Capital One: Friday, 8 p.m. ET/7 CT on FOX

The Astros and Phillies enter Game 1 at Minute Maid Park on opposite ends of the postseason extreme, with Houston having been the American League’s No. 1 seed and now having advanced to the Fall Classic in four of the past six seasons. With Dusty Baker in pursuit of the World Series ring as a manager that has eluded him in 11 previous trips to the postseason and two previous trips to the Fall Classic, the Astros are a perfect 7-0 in this postseason. Collectively, they are seeking a World Series crown that might not extinguish all the anguish over their 2017 trash-can-enabled title but would certainly cement them as the organization that owns October more than any other in MLB right now.

The Phillies, on the other hand, squeaked into October for the first time since 2011, with the help of the newly created third Wild Card spot. With Bryce Harper, their bearded franchise face, doing as he said he’d do when he signed a massive free-agent pact with Philly, they have bashed their way past more celebrated squads to get to the World Series for the first time since back-to-back appearances in ‘08-09.

• World Series ticket information: Phillies | Astros

The Astros won 19 more games than the Phillies in the regular season — the second-largest World Series matchup win disparity of all-time. But all that matters now, as Game 1 arrives, is that both clubs enter this Series with rested aces. Will Houston’s recent experience be an edge or will Philadelphia pound its way to a championship that few could have seen coming? We’ll start to get an answer Friday night.

• Key storylines for Astros-Phillies World Series

When is the game and how can I watch it?

Game 1, which will air on FOX at 8 p.m. ET/7 CT, is scheduled for Friday.

All games are available in the U.S. on MLB.TV (authentication to a participating Pay TV provider is required). Live games are also available in select countries outside the U.S. For full details, click here.

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Who are the starting pitchers?

Phillies: Right-hander Aaron Nola (2-1, 3.12 ERA in the 2022 postseason) will start Game 1 in Houston. Nola pitched 6 2/3 perfect innings before allowing a couple hits against the Astros on Oct. 3 at Minute Maid Park, where the Phils clinched the third NL Wild Card spot.

Nola has been mostly rolling since then. He allowed one unearned run in 12 2/3 innings in his first two starts in the postseason before he got tagged for six runs in 4 2/3 innings in Game 2 of the National League Championship in San Diego. The Padres were on Nola’s fastball so much that the Phillies looked to see if he might have been tipping his pitches. He wasn’t. He just did not execute as needed against talented hitters. Nola will be well rested for Game 1, which is a good thing, because he is typically better with extra rest.

Wheeler’s dominant Game 5 start
Astros: Justin Verlander (1-0, 6.30 ERA in the postseason) is expected to start Game 1 in Houston. Verlander started Game 1 of the AL Division Series against the Mariners, giving up six runs and 10 hits in four innings, and pitched better in his Game 1 start in the AL Championship Series, allowing one run and three hits in six innings against the Yankees. His final regular-season start came Oct. 4 against the Phillies and he didn’t allow a hit in five innings, capping a regular season in which he was 18-4 with a 1.75 ERA and will likely win his third Cy Young Award. In Verlander’s postseason career, he’s 15-11 with a 3.55 ERA in 33 games (32 starts), but he is 0-6 with a 5.68 ERA in seven World Series starts.

Justin Verlander fans 11 Yankees
What might the starting lineups look like?

Phillies: Philadelphia entered the World Series with the top four hitters in its lineup swinging the bat well. Manager Rob Thomson has been pretty consistent with the Phils’ lineup in the postseason: The only changes come at center fielder and shortstop. Brandon Marsh and Bryson Stott start against righties, while Matt Vierling and Edmundo Sosa start against lefties.

  1. Kyle Schwarber, LF
  2. Rhys Hoskins, 1B
  3. J.T. Realmuto, C
  4. Bryce Harper, DH
  5. Nick Castellanos, RF
  6. Alec Bohm, 3B
  7. Bryson Stott, SS
  8. Jean Segura, 2B
  9. Brandon Marsh, CF

Astros: Why mess with a good thing? Martín Maldonado will catch Verlander in Game 1, which means he’ll bat ninth behind Chas McCormick, who has gotten most of the starts at center in the playoffs and should be in Friday’s lineup.

  1. Jose Altuve, 2B
  2. Jeremy Peña, SS
  3. Yordan Alvarez, LF
  4. Alex Bregman, 3B
  5. Kyle Tucker, RF
  6. Yuli Gurriel, 1B
  7. Trey Mancini, DH
  8. Chas McCormick, CF
  9. Martín Maldonado, C

How will the bullpens line up after the starter?

Phillies: The Phils’ bullpen has slowly come together late in the season, with Seranthony Domínguez and José Alvarado the top two options late in games. But Thomson also has used right-handers Zach Eflin and David Robertson in the ninth inning in the postseason. It really depends who is available and what the matchups look like. Behind those four are left-hander Brad Hand and righties Andrew Bellatti and Connor Brogdon. Noah Syndergaard is the potential No. 4 starter.