Charlie Morton started Game 1 of the World Series for the Atlanta Braves Tuesday night and immediately became a legend, despite only going 2.1 innings. How is that possible? Because he wound up throwing 16 pitches and retiring all three batters he faced after breaking his freaking leg.
Morton entered the bottom of the second supported by a 3-0 lead. The Houston Astros sent Yuli Gurriel to the plate and he promptly lined an 0-1 pitch off the back of Morton's right leg. The ball caromed directly to first baseman Freddie Freeman for an unusual 1-3 putout. Morton was in some pain but seemed fine. He proceeded to strike out Chaz McCormick on four pitches, and got Martin Maldonado to line out after a six-pitch at-bat.
The 37-year-old righty entered the dugout, sat for a while as the Braves increased the lead to 5-0, then came back out for the bottom of the third. He struck out Jose Altuve looking after a six-pitch battle, finishing things off with a nasty 80 mph curve. As Morton followed through he looked to be in real pain and was eventually lifted from the game.
Here's what it looked like:
A little while later, we got the news: Morton had actually fractured his right fibula and was out for the rest of the World Series. Atlanta's veteran ace is done but still managed to throw 16 pitches with a broken limb. And his stuff was still electric! It was remarkable.
Below is video of everything Morton did after getting hurt:
That was truly incredible stuff from Morton, who was pitching in his second consecutive World Series and third in five years. It's a shame he'll have to miss the rest of it. The Braves will struggle to find a way to replace him.