*Note that Game 3 was postponed to Monday. The MLB Postseason continues today on an NFL Sunday, a schedule that will undoubtedly impact NFL ratings again this weekend. Also, the presidential debate is tonight as well, so I hope the NFL isn’t hoping for any incredible boost in ratings in Week 5. I can’t go a Sunday without football, or a Saturday for that matter, so I will be keeping an eye on all of the football and baseball action. For the Red Sox today is judgement day.
They either win and extend the series or lose and it’s all over for David Ortiz and Boston. The Red Sox have famously come back in the postseason before. Look no further than the Red Sox in the World Series several years back. They erased the curse with four straight wins to comeback from three games back. So, do not discount Boston yet. They just have some work to do against the Cleveland Indians.
A hungry underdog is nothing to take lightly, and the Indians are once again showing their resiliency here against the Red Sox. Boston looked like they were going to cruise to the World Series after they ran away with the division. Don’t look now, but the script has flipped, and the Blue Jays look like they’re going to be the team to survive from that division. The Jays were looking dead in the water in September, but that’s the thing about baseball, everything can change in a second.
Toronto is just getting hot at the right time, and the Red Sox are floundering. However, three wins in a row were nothing for the Red Sox in the regular season. They were able to rip off some big winning streaks. So, this isn’t a finished series yet. Clay Buchholz will need to revert back to his glory days when he was a fixture in the Red Sox with a Cy Young to his credit. In the other dugout, Josh Tomlin will look to wrap this series up with a win at Fenway.
Cleveland Indians vs. Boston Red Sox
Josh Tomlin (13-9, 4.40 ERA) vs. Clay Buchholz (8-10, 4.78 ERA)
Buchholz looked like his career was in the tubes in 2014. He posted an ERA of 5.34, a year after he went for a 1.74 ERA in 2013. Something was certainly off there, that doesn’t need any explanation. Buchholz came back and had a much better 2015 with an ERA of 3.26. Now, he has found himself somewhere in the middle. I will say this, though, Buchholz is currently pitching as well as he was in 2013. Note that he’s notched an ERA of 1.42 in his last three starts. Further, in his last ten starts, he has allowed 1 or no runs in eight of his last ten starts. That is the kind of production that earned him a Cy Young. Buchholz needs to bring that kind of energy to Game 3 at Fenway Park.
Likewise, Josh Tomlin is playing some of his best baseball of the year at the moment. Throughout the entire year he’s been shaky at best, but like Buccholz, has turned it on at the right time. And with the injury to Carlos Carrasco, the resurgence of Tomlin is a big deal for the Indians. Tomlin has gone for a 1.74 ERA and 0.77 WHIP in his previous three starts. He’s allowed just 5 runs total in his last five outings. With that said, I believe the Boston offense comes to play today. Tomlin has been dinged for an ERA of 5.49 against the Red Sox in seven appearances. I like this game to go the Red Sox way, as they force a Game 4 and climb back in the series.
PICK: RED SOX TO WIN -134