October 28, 2018

World Series 5: Red Sox 5, Dodgers 1

Red Sox - 200 001 110 - 5  8  0
Dodgers - 100 000 000 - 1  3  0

David Price gave a superb performance tonight: 7-3-1-2-5, 89. The Red Sox could not have asked for better. At one point, Price retired 14 Dodgers in a row and 20 of 22. Los Angeles never had a chance in Game 5.

Price is the first pitcher to work into the eighth inning of a World Series game on only one day of rest since Bob Turley of the Yankees did it in 1957. The bullpen faced six batters. None of them put the ball into play. Joe Kelly struck out three straight batters to end the eighth. Chris Sale struck out the side in the ninth.

Steve Pearce crushed a pair of home runs, including a two-run shot in the first - on Clayton Kershaw's sixth pitch of the night - to send the Red Sox on their way. Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez also went deep. Pearce grew up as a Red Sox fan and he was named the Most Valuable Player of the World Series. Pearce had four hits, all for extra bases: three home runs and a double. He scored five runs and knocked in eight. In 16 plate appearances, he did not strike out at all.

The Red Sox finished the regular season and postseason with a record of 119-57. They have won 16 of 19 World Series games since 2004. The 2018 Red Sox went 7-1 on the road in the postseason, the most road wins of any World Series team except the 1996 MFY (8-0). The Dodgers became the first team to lose the deciding game of the World Series on its home field in consecutive seasons since the New York Giants lost the 1936 and 1937 series at the Polo Grounds.

Principal Owner John Henry: "This is the greatest Red Sox team ever."

The Red Sox wasted no time in jumping out to a lead. Betts flied to center, but Andrew Benintendi grounded an 0-2 pitch into center field. Pearce nailed the first pitch he saw over the wall in left-center and Boston - who finished the postseason with a 10-0 record when scoring first - led 2-0.

Price's first pitch of the game - a fastball away at 92 - was hit for a home run to right-center by David Freese. He then walked Justin Turner, throwing four balls after a foul. This was not a good start. But ... Price got Enrique Hernandez to hit into a double play and he fanned Manny Machado, who had been ahead in the count 3-0. On the fourth pitch, Machado took a quick step to first (now he's in a hurry to get to the base?), but the pitch was a called strike. He took the 3-1 and started jogging down the line, but it was another called strike. Machado fouled off three more pitches before missing a high fastball.

And Price promptly settled into a groove, allowing only three baserunners over the next six innings. Yasiel Puig singled with one out in the second. David Freese got a triple in the third when Martinez lost his routine fly to right in the dusky sky. It fell behind him and the Dodgers had the tying run at third with one out. Price shrugged his shoulders, figuring he could get out of this little jam with only three pitches. #1: Turner grounded out to shortstop. #2: Hernandez took a strike. #3: Hernandez fouled out to right.

Price set the Dodgers down in order in the fourth. 9 pitches: K, F8, L4.

Price set the Dodgers down in order in the fifth. 11 pitches: K, 4-3, 1U.

Price set the Dodgers down in order in the sixth. 9 pitches: 4-3, F7, 4-3.

Price set the Dodgers down in order in the seventh. 7 pitches: L6, F7, 1-3.

From the third through the seventh - five innings - Price needed only 45 pitches. He was always deliberate and often deep in concentration, but he also seemed to be working extremely free and easy. On the mound to begin the last of the eighth, he was at 83 and the Red Sox now led 5-1, thanks to three solo homers: Betts to left in the sixth, JDM to dead center in the seventh, Pearce to left-center in the eighth.

I was really hoping for a complete game, but when Price walked Chris Taylor to start the bottom of the eighth, Alex Cora went to the bullpen. Kelly came in and struck out three pinch-hitters: Matt Kemp went down swinging on 2-2, Joc Pederson was caught looking at a full-count pitch, and Cody Bellinger whiffed on 1-2.

Sale faced the Dodgers' 2-3-4 hitters in the bottom of the ninth. As his teammates stood in the field, hearts racing, or paced anxiously in the dugout, Sale struck out Turner (cffs (he was thrown out 2-3)), Hernandez (cbbbffs), and Machado (sfbs (4-for-22, .182)). It was a small, but much appreciated, gift from the baseball gods that Machado was the final out of this glorious season.


David Price / Clayton Kershaw
Betts, CF
Benintendi, LF
Pearce, 1B
Martinez, RF
Bogaerts, SS
Holt, 2B
Devers, 3B
Vázquez, C
Price, P
The Red Sox can win their fourth title in the last 15 seasons - and ninth overall - with a victory tonight. Today is the anniversary of Boston's "inevitable" 2007 World Series championship.

David Price pitched out of the bullpen in Game 3, throwing 13 pitches and getting two outs. Clayton Kershaw allowed five runs over four innings in Game 1.

The Dodgers have blown a 4-0 lead in a World Series game for the second year in a row. Last year, the Dodgers and Astros had each won two games and Los Angeles led 4-0 in the fourth inning of Game 5. But they blew that lead - as well as leads of 7-4 and 8-7 - before losing 13-12 in 10 innings. The Dodgers returned home and won Game 6, but lost Game 7.

Last night, the Dodgers were eight outs away from tying the series 2-2. Manager Dave Roberts: "It is a tough loss. Any loss in a World Series is difficult, obviously, but now we're in a situation where we're do-or-die. ... [T]he 108 wins speaks for itself in the regular season. They're very balanced. They pitch well. They put together good at-bats. They play defense. But ... we're not out yet."

Looking at the Red Sox's batting and pitching stats, no clear player emerges as the probable MVP. Andrew Benintendi leads with five hits and five runs, but most of that came in Game 1. Mookie Betts has four hits and four runs, but he's hitting only .211. Steve Pearce had four of his team-leading five RBI last night; he also has four walks and has not struck out in 12 plate appearances. Nathan Eovaldi has been amazing, but outside of Game 3 (which he lost), he has pitched only two innings. Joe Kelly has appeared in every game and thrown five scoreless innings; he's also tied for the team lead with seven strikeouts. But can a set-up guy be an MVP?

I think a strong outing from Price tonight - 6 innings, 0-2 runs - could win him the award.

WS Contest: The Red Sox have scored 79 runs (27 in ALDS, 29 in ALCS, 23 in WS). The most pitches thrown by a Boston pitcher in a game is 97, which has been done twice by Nathan Eovaldi, both as a starter (ALDS 3) and as a reliever (WS 3)!
                RS     PIT
Jeffrey M       87     108
Steve H         85     116
Laura K         78     107


Jake of All Trades said...

To paraphrase an old quote / book title:

Don’t Let Them Win Tonight!

Noah said...

Thank you so much for your coverage. Looking forward to next year!

Paul Hickman said...

SOXTASTIC !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

David Cho said...

Congratulations. A (much) better team won. I just wish the Dodgers had put up a fight, but I think the team completely deflated after giving up the 4 run lead in game 4.

laura k said...

They were unstoppable!!!

As is the JoS crew. It was fun to be back in the gamethread last night. Thanks for another great year of Joy of Sox.

laura k said...

LOL That Giants tweet! Brutal.

Paul Hickman said...

I completely agree about Manny - I actually starting calculating in about the 7th innings , if they only got 1 on then he'd potentially be the last out ? Even then I thought , surely not !!!!!

It was a Priceless & Unforgettable way to end it.

Also a few months ago it occurred to me that IF the Sox won in 2018 then 1 thing would be certain - we would logically ? never hear MFY fans chant "1918" again ....... Because NOW we can chant "2018" back ........ Indeed I might suggest that this represents a form of strange "karma" ? If you chant it enough , then maybe it may just come back to bite you !!!!!!!!!!!

Many Thanks to Allan & many others for an Entertaining Year on the Joy of Sox - few years have contained more Joy

Good Luck with the move out West - friend of mine lived in Victoria VI for years & loved it to bits. Am sure it will all work out in the end for you two joyous sox !

Cheers Paul

allan said...

"2004" will ALWAYS be the best retort. Nothing can ever top that.

Kathryn said...

Speaking of retorts..we had an abnoxious family behind us last night. Mom, two young sons (maybe 7 & 9), and mom’s brother. The uncle must have been planning his schtick before the game because he kept yelling, “Hey Boston, do you want a tissue?...to dry your tears.” This, through 7 innings, even though they were never ahead. By the 8th inning, all he could think of was to say to the Sox fan across the aisle, “You know your manager played for LA?” To which the Sox fan replied, “You know your manager is a Red Sox legend.” Priceless!

Lord Lynch said...

Just thought I'd leave a couple of quick thoughts from the other side of the pond.

As always Allan, thanks for all the work you put in, day in day out, on this site. It's so appreciated from my perspective and having run a blog over here, I know the effort that goes into doing this. It is never taken for granted. I missed the prediction competition this year, but still followed the team, and by extension, this blog. Many thanks.

And then there is this team. I'll say this. Last Tuesday I lost my beloved dog, Jake. He was a border collie, he was utterly special, he was my friend and companion and his passing was excrutiatingly painful for me. In a horrible, tough, gut-wrenching week, the team picked me up, just a little. I lay awake last night, watching the last six outs, with the bed my dog slept in empty. Sport is many things, but when it is done right, when it is a team I invest emotional energy in, and it's success coincides with a real low point, it is more special. Thanks to the organisation, the players and all associated with the 2018 Boston Red Sox. This helped.

wallythe24 said...

I'm blind drunk on Dirty Water !
What a fantastic season it's been.
A huge thanks from for for all the hard work you put in keeping us amused , entertained and informed.
Don't. Stop. EVER.
And good luck luck with the move.

A few days ago you mentioned a ' banjo effect ' comment. As far as I know it means a really bad miss as in ' couldn't hit a cow arse with a banjo '

Many Thanks


allan said...

LL: I'm so sorry to hear about Jake. I still remember your pictures of him. (Actually I still have "his" blog bookmarked and think I clicked on it in the last year.) He was one of the most beautiful dogs I've ever seen. (We both have a fondness for border collies.) You could see the obvious intelligence in his eyes and that must have made him so much fun to be around.

We've said goodbye to five dogs over the years and I swear it gets harder and more horrible each fucking time but I also know that eventually the long happy years you shared with them win out in your memory over the crushing heartbreak of letting go. It takes a while, though. ... I'm glad you shared the news, though. Now I'm going to go dry my teary eyes on Diego's neck.

Dr. Jeff said...

Thanks Allan for all of your game summaries and for continuing the blog. Much appreciated.

Franco Capizzo said...

Allan, thanks again for another year of the JoS blog. Always an excellent read. It's my favorite non-puppet Red Sox blog site!

allan said...

I cannot compete with that puppet!

(Also, I added your last sentence to my list of blurbs. I hope you don't mind.)

Franco Capizzo said...

By all means, blurb away. I'm honored!

Joy of Sox and Surviving Grady are complimentary. I come to JoS for great insight and criticism, and Surviving Grady usually echoes my gut sentiments I wouldn't say out loud. Plus, a freaking puppet. Regardless, you're both great.

Last thing I wanted to say is that, maybe once a year or so, I will read through your posts in October 2004. They're just gold, man. I hope you have a good backup!

allan said...

maybe once a year or so, I will read through your posts in October 2004


Thank you! Do you know that in March/April 2005 I went back and rewatched the postseason and posted about each game? At the time, I did not post much about ALCS Games 4 and 5. I can't even really say why. So those later posts were sort of a way to fix that oversight.

Michael J. G. said...

Allan, thank you so much for another great year. I discovered the forums this season, (you know me there as mjg13x) but I've been reading the blog for years. I'm extrenely grateful to you for all the work you put into it. I hope the move goes smoothly, and I'll see you right back here on 28 March!