BRENT STECKER

Seattle’s Corbin Carroll leads D-backs to World Series with huge Game 7

Oct 24, 2023, 8:23 PM | Updated: Oct 25, 2023, 12:15 pm

The dream rookie season of Seattle native Corbin Carroll just hit another level.

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The Arizona Diamondbacks’ budding 23-year-old star has already done a lot in his short time in the big leagues. He made a big impression in his initial call up last season with the D-backs. He kept it up this year, earning himself a starting spot on the National League team for the MLB All-Star Game – in his hometown, no less. And he continued all the way into the postseason, likely earning himself the NL Rookie of the Year award.

But it doesn’t get much bigger than what Carroll did Tuesday night. In Game 7 of the NLCS, Carroll was the standout of Arizona’s 4-2 victory, leading the D-backs to their first World Series appearance since 2001.

Carroll went 3 for 4 at the plate with a sacrifice fly, two runs scored, two RBIs, two stolen bases, and caught the final out of the clinching win in right field.

Every bit of that line mattered for the D-backs.

Hitting second in Arizona’s lineup, Carroll scored the first run of the game, reaching base on an infield single, moving to third on a Gabriel Moreno single, and crossing the plate on a Christian Walker fielder’s choice in the first inning.

The next time up, Carroll singled and stole second despite a pickoff attempt on the play. Yeah, he’s fast. In fact, so fast that he posted the best sprint speed on a stolen base of the postseason.

In the fifth inning, Carroll made his most important contribution of the night. With Arizona down 2-1, Carroll hit a two-out single up the middle to score Emmanuel Rivera.

Corbin Carroll wasn’t done there. He then stole second again and scored on a single by Moreno, giving Arizona the lead back. All that two-out magic quite frankly wouldn’t have happened without his game-changing baserunning.

Oh, and how about some insurance? Carroll did that, too, hitting a sac fly to bring home Geraldo Perdomo in the seventh inning, making it a 4-2 lead for Arizona.

History was made with Carroll’s night, too. Per OptaSTATS, Carroll is the first MLB player ever with at least three hits and two stolen bases in a postseason Game 7.

From Arizona Sports: Carroll posts historic three-hit night in Game 7

Carroll ended the 2023 regular season with a .285/.362/.506 slash line for an .868 OPS with 25 home runs, 54 stolen bases, 116 runs, 76 RBIs, and a league-leading 10 triples. Though he’d had a tough NLCS entering Tuesday, he starred in the two previous playoff series for Arizona.

The rookie phenom isn’t the only notable Diamondbacks player with ties to Seattle. Ketel Marte, who won NLCS MVP honors and is currently on a 16-game postseason hitting streak (an NL record), began his MLB career with the Mariners, while closer Paul Sewald, who earned the save in Game 7 with a perfect ninth inning, was an M’s fan favorite who was traded to Arizona just ahead of the trade deadline this July.

Carroll isn’t that far removed from his standout high school career at Seattle’s Lakeside School. He graduated in 2019 and was soon drafted 16th overall in that year’s MLB Draft, and he quickly turned into one of the top prospects in baseball.

If Carroll’s playing style is familiar for Seattle baseball fans, particularly his left-handed swing and running style, it’s owed to Ichiro Suzuki. Not only is Carroll similarly built with a 5-foot-10, 165-pound frame, but he grew up idolizing Ichiro, as his first baseball memory is of being a young boy watching Ichiro play right field for the Mariners at Safeco Field.

Corbin Carroll and the D-backs now move on to face the American League champion Texas Rangers in the World Series, which will begin Friday. The ESPN Radio broadcast of each World Series game will air on Seattle Sports.

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