Yesterday, the Red Sox won their first postseason game since 2013. In a series that many Red Sox fans expected to be another abrupt end to a first-place season, this team showed everyone that they aren’t done yet.
They came out to a slow start with Doug Fister giving up 3 runs in the first inning, and that feeling of “here we go again” started to settle in. But Joe Kelly was able to come out and pitch well enough to not make the deficit any worse. Then we saw something the Red Sox offense hasn’t shown us the last two postseasons: resilience. They didn’t just roll over like they did against the Indians last year, and like it appeared they were doing again this year. The Red Sox offense finally showed us the explosiveness that we all knew they were capable of. Hanley was balling, Devers was balling, JBJ was balling. It was beautiful to watch.
Once they started popping off runs and took the lead, the game was virtually all but over as David Price entered the game in what was another scoreless relief appearance for him. Since returning from DL in September Price has pitched 15.1 innings in relief, posting a 0.00 ERA and 19 strikeouts. He is suddenly the brightest spot in the team’s bullpen, which is weird to think about. Price was looked at as this teams ace a year ago, and now he’s their best reliever. It’s amazing how these things end up playing out.
Many people thought he should have started that game yesterday, but I disagree. His value as a reliever is something this team needs right now if they want to continue winning postseason games. They need his arm in the bullpen to get them through those innings before Reed, Smith, or Kimbrell enter the game.
But with those great relief appearances by Price, the offense needs to continue scoring like they did yesterday. Hanley Rameriez sparked the run yesterday by going 4-4, and I believe he is the heartbeat of this Red Sox lineup. A lot was expected out of him in terms of leadership with the departure of David Ortiz, and yesterday he looked like he was embracing that role. I don’t want to get too excited about it because we’ve seen him roll over like a dog in the past, but he looked ready yesterday.
There were a lot of positive things to take away from yesterdays win, but none of it will matter if they don’t put it all together again today. Porcello needs to come out and pitch like that guy who won the Cy Young award last season, not the bum that he’s been this season. Get the job done and send this series back to Houston.
Written By: Nick Cherico (@NickCherico2)