Astros' Hinch: Backstop bust to Series-winning skipper

LOS ANGELES (AP) About a dozen years ago, A.J. Hinch figured out his future in baseball wasn't behind the plate.

"When you don't hit a slider consistently, you're not going to play very long," he recalled Wednesday. "And there's only so far personality can take you as a backup catcher."

Charisma, however, is nearly everything in an era when many dugout decisions are delegated to front-office administrators analyzing stacks of statistics. The Astros manager motivated his players, soothed them and charmed them to a runaway title in the AL West and then to the first World Series championship in Houston's 56-season history. The Astros capped the season with a 5-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 7 on Wednesday night.


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