Every game in the post-season is scheduled to start at 1am UK time, except for tonight in Houston. Which is great news for sleep-deprived Sox fans in the UK, and probably for kids in the States too. (It’s a school night and I know that 8pm ET is prime TV but I wish MLB would give young fans the chance to see whole games.)
The best of seven series is tied at one each after an implosion (and some iffy strikes and balls calls at home plate) in Game 1 and a scary end to Game 2. Sale has been in hospital and Price still hasn’t won a post-season game either. But tonight, Nathan Eovaldi takes the mound. And he’s been good.
So, too, has the bullpen, especially Matt Barnes and Ryan Brasier. I’m not forgetting Rick Porcello, but I always expect him to do the job. He’s a starter after all and should start in Game 4, which rules him out tonight. The exception of course was Kimbrel, who went through the whole regular season with an ERA of 3.3 something but is currently 10.80 in the post-season.
Three appearances. Three runs conceded. Where’s that breaking ball, Craig?
We need to win at least one of our three scheduled games in Houston to bring them back to Fenway, and I think tonight could be it. If Eovaldi pitches with anything like the control and variety he showed against the Yankees, and the bullpen continue to be consistent, then we shouldn’t need Kimbrel at all.
Assuming the bats continue to swing. They will. I’m looking to Mookie, JD and Rafael Devers to bring the runs home.
Mookie is, according to reports, smiling again. JD will want to show Minute Maid Park that he is a better player than they ever saw in an Astros uniform. And you just know that Rafael will relish the chance to make an impact when it matters. He did it in Boston. He can do it in Houston.
I think these two teams are the best in baseball right now. I fear that the series will go to the seventh game. I just hope my heart can withstand the tension.
But everything is in place. I have told our dinner hosts that I need to be away in good order by 10pm. My Red Sox shirt is laundered and ironed. There is Sam Adams in the fridge. And I confidently expect to be in bed by about 1am with Dirty Water playing in my head.
Today from the everysmith vaults: The recent death of Marty Balin has prompted a fest of Airplane shows. Marty’s beautiful voice did not always meld well with the increasingly strident Airplane style towards the end, but he will always be remembered in this household with love and affection for songs such as Coming Back to Me. Listening to a Winterland show (1970-10-04), he shouts out, at the end of Volunteers, “I want a new band!” Sad.