Red Sox left-hander David Price has been among the majors’ best starters for the majority of his career, but playoff success has eluded the 33-year-old. In his latest disappointing October performance, Price threw 1 2/3 innings of three-run ball Saturday during a 6-2 loss to the Yankees, who evened the teams’ ALDS matchup at a game apiece. Amazingly, Price now owns an 0-9 record and a 6.03 ERA over 10 postseason starts, though his ongoing struggles on the game’s biggest stage won’t lead the Red Sox to pull him from their rotation. Both manager Alex Cora and pitching coach Dana LeVangie expressed confidence in the five-time All-Star after Saturday’s game, per Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald. While Mastrodonato argues that the Red Sox should think about shifting Price to a relief role for the rest of the postseason, the team’s not considering it. Price is “one of our starters,” said Cora, who added that he simply had a “bad outing” in Game 2.
Given that the ALDS is only a best-of-five series, Boston won’t need Price to start again versus the Yankees. But after throwing just 42 pitches Saturday, Price could function as a reliever before the series is out. Price told Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com and other reporters he’d be ready to pitch again as early as Game 3 on Monday, and he also declared (via Mastrodonato) that he’s “looking forward to winning games in October as a starter.”
More on Boston, whose series is shifting to New York for Games 3 and 4:
- The Red Sox are deciding between right-handers Rick Porcello and Nathan Eovaldi for the third game of the series, Cora said Saturday (via Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston). It appears they’ll turn to Porcello, though, as Eovaldi suggested he’s lined up for Game 4, Rob Bradford of WEEI tweets. Porcello’s only a few days removed from working out of Boston’s bullpen, having thrown 15 pitches and picked up a pair of outs in the eighth inning of its Game 1 win Friday. The 29-year-old functioned solely as a starter during the regular season, as has been the case throughout his career, and pitched to a 4.28 ERA/4.01 FIP with 8.94 K/9 and 2.26 BB/9 in 191 1/3 innings. Porcello has been more effective on the road than at home this year, which seems to bode well for the Red Sox’s current situation. He posted a 4.77 ERA/4.63 FIP at Fenway Park during the regular season and a 3.86 ERA/3.48 FIP outside of Boston.
- First baseman Mitch Moreland exited Saturday’s game in the eighth inning because of right hamstring tightness, Cora announced (via Cotillo). It doesn’t seem to be a serious issue, however, with Cora saying that Boston probably won’t remove Moreland from its ALDS roster. If healthy, the left-handed hitter’s likely to start Monday against Yankees righty Luis Severino, Cotillo writes. Boston replaced him Saturday with the righty-swinging Steve Pearce – who, to his credit, has outproduced Moreland against RHPs this year.