|5:08 PM PT6:08 PM MT7:08 PM CT8:08 PM ET20:08 ET0:08 GMT8:08 5:08 PM MST7:08 PM EST7:38 PM VEN4:08 UAE (+1)6:08 PM CT, October 19, 2021
Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts Attendance: 38,010
Astros search for answers to Red Sox's ALCS onslaught
Houston Astros at Boston Red Sox
- The Astros won three out of four in the 2017 ALDS, but in 2018 and 2021, the Red Sox have won six of eight postseason games between the two. The 12 runs scored by the Red Sox last night was the most either team has scored against each other in their postseason meetings.
- The Astros are 4-3 this postseason and have lost two straight. They lost three straight in the Games 1, 2 and 3 to the Rays in the 2020 ALCS and four straight to the Red Sox in the 2018 ALCS to the Red Sox (Games two through five) in recent seasons.
- The Red Sox are 6-2 this postseason. They are leading all postseason teams with a .317 batting average. They also have 20 home runs which is more than double the second-place team (Astros with nine).
- Kyle Tucker is hitting .296 (8/27) with three home runs, 11 RBI and seven runs scored in seven postseason games in 2021. He had one home run and six RBI in 22 postseason games entering 2021.
- Kike Hernandez is hitting .500 (18/36) with five homers, nine RBI and nine runs scored this postseason. He has multiple hits in five of eight postseason games. Only four Boston players have had 20 or more hits in a single postseason with the last being Jacoby Ellsbury in 2013.
- Zack Greinke has pitched just the fourth inning of Game 3 of the ALDS against the White Sox this postseason. His last start was September 19. He has four career postseason wins. Nick Pivetta is 1-0 with a 3.12 ERA in two postseason starts in 2021. He was 0-1 in 2021 against the Astros in the regular season.
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BOSTON -- On the heels of back-to-back blowout losses, the Houston Astros are scrambling to find an answer for the Boston Red Sox bats after falling behind 2-1 in the best-of-seven American League Championship Series.
The Red Sox followed up their 9-5 win in Game 2 on Saturday in Houston with a 13-2 thumping of the visiting Astros in Game 3 on Monday night. Game 4 is set for Tuesday night in Boston.
Kyle Schwarber's second-inning grand slam Monday punctuated Boston's six-run second inning -- and put the Red Sox in the history books in the process.
Boston became the first team to record three grand slams in a single postseason series. J.D. Martinez and Rafael Devers hit slams Saturday in the first and second innings, respectively.
"The thing is, you know what, we have guys on the pond, let's be aggressive here," Schwarber said of the team's approach. "We're wanting to get after these guys. We want to be aggressive."
Houston manager Dusty Baker told reporters on Sunday that he was considering four different pitchers to start Game 4 after a wrath of injuries left Houston's mound corps depleted.
After losing ace Lance McCullers Jr. to a right forearm strain before the series, the Astros also lost Game 2 starter Luis Garcia to a right knee strain as he was pulled before getting an out in the second inning.
On Monday, Houston starter Jose Urquidy injured only his pride after surrendering six runs (five earned) in just 1 2/3 innings.
"We know what happened here today. It was not a great game for us. It was terrible," Astros shortstop Carlos Correa said postgame. "We've been here before, so (on Tuesday) we come back with fresh minds, put in the work and go out there and try to even the series."
Baker ultimately settled on Zack Greinke as his Game 4 starter. The veteran right-hander has pitched only once this postseason, allowing two hits during a scoreless inning of relief in the Astros' 12-6 loss to the Chicago White Sox in Game 3 of the AL Division Series.
The 37-year-old former Cy Young Award winner was shipped to the bullpen following a mediocre regular season in which he went 11-6 with a 4.16 ERA over 30 games (29 starts).
Despite a long and successful career, Greinke has struggled historically in postseason outings, going 4-6 with a 4.18 ERA over 20 appearances, including 19 starts.
Against the Red Sox, Greinke is 2-5 with a 5.09 ERA in nine career games (eight starts). His numbers are even worse at Fenway Park, where he has gone 0-2 with a 10.22 ERA in four appearances (three starts).
Boston right-hander Nick Pivetta (1-0, 3.12 ERA in the 2021 playoffs) will make his first career postseason start in Game 4.
Pivetta has pitched out of the bullpen twice during the Red Sox's postseason run. He tossed four scoreless innings and registered seven strikeouts to pick up the win in Boston's 6-4, 10-inning victory against the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 3 of the ALDS.
Prior to that, Pivetta surrendered three runs over 4 2/3 innings in Tampa Bay's 5-0 win during the series opener.
Pivetta faced the Astros once during the 2021 regular season, tossing six innings of two-run ball while striking out nine in a 2-1 loss on June 6 in Houston. Overall, Pivetta is 0-2 with a 5.25 ERA in two career starts against the Astros.
--Gethin Coolbaugh, Field Level Media
Updated October 19, 2021