MLB postseason 2018: Three keys to the Red Sox vs. Astros ALCS matchup

Опубликовано Observer в рубрике Авто-обзор 10 Июнь 2019

The Red Sox host the Astros in Game 1 of the ALCS Saturday night in what should be an exciting series.Boston and Houston were the two best teams in the regular season winning 108 and 103 games, respectively. So how well do these two teams stack up againsteach other?MORE: Watch Astros-Red Sox live on fuboTV (7-day free trial)Sporting Roberto Clemente Jersey News breaks down three keys to the ALCS.Boston’s bullpenWhile Chris Sale, Rick Porcello and Nathan Eovaldi are all serviceable starters for the Red Sox, the bullpen is Boston’s Achilles heel. Boston’s bullpen has beenbeen discu sed ad nauseum throughout the season, and it still remains a problem.In four games against the Yankees in the ALDS, the Red Sox bullpen posted a 3.57 ERA over 17 2/3 innings. If you exclude the 16-1 beatdown in Game 3, then the bullpen ERA was 4.02. Lest we forget Craig Kimbrel nearly blew the save in Game 4 after giving up two runs on one hit and two walks in the ninth inning. If notfor Steve Pearce’s game-saving stretch at first base, the Yankees might have forced a decisive Game 5.In all three of Boston’s wins in the ALDS, the starters got through at least five innings of work before handing it over to the bullpen. Boston won’t be able to win games if it has to go to its bullpen early like it did in Game 2 when David Price left after just 1 2/3innings.Can Carlos Correa get it going for Houston?After hitting .315 with 24 homers and 84 RBIs in 2017, Correa regre sed this season hitting .239 with 15 homers and 65 RBIs. Not all of it was just poor production, though: Correabattled a back injury for a large Josh Harrison Jersey portion of the season and says he’s still feeling effects to this day.His struggles carried over into the postseason, as he has one hit in 10 at-bats with two RBIs and three walks. While the Astros hadno problem scoring runs against the Indians in the ALDS, Correa will eventually need to produce to helpthe Astros at a shot at a repeat.MORE: What went wrong forsix teams with early playoff exitsThe first two games of the series will be at Fenway Park, but that nece sarily doesn’t bode well for Correa who hit .167 (2for 12) in the Astros’ three regular-season games there.Who will blink first?Houston had arguably the best starting rotation heading into the postseason. After a sweep of the Indians in the ALDS, it’s difficultto doubt their pitching prowe s. Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole and Dallas Keuchel pitched a combined 17 1/3innings, surrendering five earned runs and striking out 21. If you were to include their bullpen as well, the Houston is pitching otherworldly.The Red Sox scored 27 runs in four games vs. the Yankees,highlighted by their 16-run explosion in Game 3. Led by J.D. Martinez’s .357 Kent Tekulve Jersey average and six RBIs, Boston hit .279 as a team in the ALDS and that’s with MVP-candidate Mookie Betts hitting just .188 (3for 16) in the series.If history is any indicator, pitching usually takes teams deep in the postseason. But at this point, anything can happen.

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