Published: Mon, October 15, 2018
Culture | By Jeremy Gray

LEADING OFF: Red Sox seek to clean things up vs Astros

LEADING OFF: Red Sox seek to clean things up vs Astros

Springer will attempt to claim sole possession of the record as the Astros face off against the Red Sox' David Price for Game 2 of the ALCS on Sunday night. Price hasn't pitched since allowing three runs in 1 2/3 innings in a Game 2 Division Series loss to the Yankees.

Price, the first-overall selection of the 2007 amateur draft, just barely bettered his 2011 equivalent, Gerrit Cole - baseball's first postseason matchup of such elite prospects - so that even though he remains winless (0-9) in 11 career playoff starts, his teams lifted their collective record to 1-10.

It wasn't a great strike three call from the ump, and it was certainly a controversial decision to toss manager Alex Cora (from the dugout!), but with two outs, the bases loaded and a chance to chase Justin Verlander out of the game, this one's on Andrew Benintendi.

- Optimistic note: Teams that have lost Game 1 of the ALCS over the last 18 years have gone on to win the series eight times, including the 2013 and 2004 Red Sox teams.

The Red Sox managed just three hits with their ace on the mound in (realistically) a must-win Game 1. The shaky Price, who followed one-out walks to Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman in the top of the first with strikeouts of Yuli Gurriel and Tyler White, quickly gave back his advantage, as Astros leadoff hitter George Springer poked a two-out, two-run double to short right field to even the score at 2-2 in the top of the second. Five runs (four earned) on six hits and two walks in six innings hardly qualifies as a good start, especially in the postseason. Reddick and Gurriel homered off Brandon Workman.

Did Luis Severino know what time Game 3 started?
Well, that question is a lot more complicated than one might think. "It was a special moment for me". Devers singled twice, stole a base, scored two runs and knocked in another.

To Cole's credit, he was able to settle down following that three-run second third inning, and finished his start having retired the final 10 batters he faced. By the time it made its way back into the vicinity of the infield, the Astros were already standing atop a two-run lead.

On the other side, when the Red Sox tied it up with two of their own off Verlander in the fifth, it was a similar breakdown in command from the starter. We need this guy. We're not gonna hang our heads in the locker room. "This is the time when we kick in gear and start fighting".

Some current and former Major League Baseball players, many of whom likely have, at best, mixed feelings about Joe West, seemed to find joy in the event. Cora insisted that he had faith in Price, and he told the 2012 AL Cy Young victor as much after the Red Sox eliminated the Yankees in the previous round.

The Astros took the lead in the third.

Cole was 15-5 with a 2.88 ERA in the regular season.

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