The Astros need to keep the non-big four bats quiet for Boston.
There likely will be now controlling how well their big four hit the ball in this series. I anticipate Devers and Bogaerts and Martinez and Verdugo to have some big hits and helped them score some runs.
The key for the Astros will be keeping all those other guys quiet. Can the Astros keep Christian Vazquez from having a big late inning hit? Can the Astros pitchers stifle Hunter Renfroe and Kyle Schwarber? Can they bring Kike Hernandez back down to earth?
If Astros pitching can make all those guys non-factors in the series, I think the Astros 8/ 9 deep lineup well eventually beat out this power Boston lineup.
The Astros need to crack Nathan Eovaldi.
Conventional wisdom would say they need to shut down Chris Sale, the Red Sox ace and former Cy Young winner. but since he only came back from injury a few months ago and hasn’t looked close to his peak form, I don’t think Sale is the primary pitcher for the Astros to worry about. I wanna know how the Astros are going to handle Boston’s other ace – Nathan Eovaldi.
Eovaldi is a 1.93 ERA pitcher in the playoffs and has posted back-to-back eight strikeout games in his last two postseason starts.
The current Houston Astros lineup is a career 22-of-70 (.333 BA) with 4 HRs, 9 RBIs and .931 OPS against the right-hander, but Eovaldi always seems to reach another gear during the postseason. He’s the one guy on this Red Sox staff they could tilt the series in their favor with a couple of great performances.
If the Astros can get to Eovaldi and chase off the mound before the 5th inning, that will leave a shallow Red Sox bullpen to carry the remaining more than four innings against this Astros lineup.
No lead is safe – the Astros need to score, score, score (six+ runs a game).
I think it’s fair to say that no matter what the score is or what inning the game is in no league will be safe in this series . Both teams are elite in their offense and can score in bunches. I have a hard time save games being a 3-1 or 4-2 final score. I think a lot of these games are gonna be one by bulk offense.
If Houston wants us to advance the World Series, they’re gonna have to likely score six plus runs in every game. Heck Houston – why stop there? Score 8, 10, 14… just don’t stop.
This Boston offense is too locked in to reasonable expect Astro pitchers to keep them bottled up the entire series. If the Astros can wear out this subpar Boston pitching staff and manage to get out ahead in these games, Houston should be in the driver’s seat to reach their third World Series in the last five years.