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Brewers-Dodgers G3: Grandal back in lineup

Travel day gives pitchers rest after combined record for appearances
MLB.com

MILWAUKEE -- The entertainment value of the National League Championship Series should remain high as the Brewers and Dodgers resume festivities at Dodger Stadium tonight for Game 3.

The last time the clubs met out west was a wild 21-5 Dodgers win over Brewers Game 3 starter Jhoulys Chacin on Aug. 2, when the Dodgers launched seven home runs. Joc Pederson and Yasiel Puig had two each, while Justin Turner, Cody Bellinger and Brian Dozier slugged one apiece.

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MILWAUKEE -- The entertainment value of the National League Championship Series should remain high as the Brewers and Dodgers resume festivities at Dodger Stadium tonight for Game 3.

The last time the clubs met out west was a wild 21-5 Dodgers win over Brewers Game 3 starter Jhoulys Chacin on Aug. 2, when the Dodgers launched seven home runs. Joc Pederson and Yasiel Puig had two each, while Justin Turner, Cody Bellinger and Brian Dozier slugged one apiece.

View Full Game Coverage

:: NLCS schedule and results ::

Los Angeles scored a 10th-inning walk-off win the previous game, 6-4, on Yasmani Grandal's two-run homer. Milwaukee won the first two games of the series, with Wade Miley, Joakim Soria and Jeremy Jeffress combining on a two-hit 1-0 shutout on July 31.

Postseason gear: Brewers | Dodgers

In the history of best-of-seven series with the 2-3-2 format, teams that split the first two games on the road have gone on to take the series 36 of 80 times (45 percent).

Starting lineups
Brewers: With righty Walker Buehler on the mound for L.A., Milwaukee's lineup card is likely to look like so:

1. Lorenzo Cain, CF
2. Christian Yelich, RF
3. Ryan Braun, LF
4. Travis Shaw, 2B
5. Jesus Aguilar, 1B
6. Mike Moustakas, 3B
7. Erik Kratz, C
8. Orlando Arcia, SS
9. Jhoulys Chacin, P

Dodgers: Grandal returns, hitting seventh.

1. Joc Pederson, LF
2. Max Muncy, 1B
3. Justin Turner, 3B
4. Manny Machado, SS
5. Cody Bellinger, CF
6. Yasiel Puig, RF
7. Yasmani Grandal, C
8. Enrique Hernandez, 2B
9. Walker Buehler, P

Who are the starting pitchers?
Brewers: For Chacin (15-8, 3.50 ERA in the regular season), Game 3 of the NLCS will be an exercise in a player's uncanny ability to forget poor performances. On Aug. 2 at Dodger Stadium, a disputed walk helped load the bases for Bellinger's grand slam, part of a 4 1/3-inning outing in which Chacin was charged with nine runs (eight earned) on five hits and four walks.

"I know people might talk a lot about that," said Chacin, who rebounded to post a 2.67 ERA in his final 11 starts of the regular season before delivering five scoreless innings on short rest against the Rockies on Game 2 of the NL Division Series.

Video: NLCS Gm3: Chacin on his effective slider for Game 3

Dodgers: Buehler (8-5, 2.62 ERA) has looked like an ace-in-waiting for the past two months, except for the second inning of Game 3 of the NLDS against the Braves. Things sped up and he struggled through a five-run inning in a noisy ballpark in Atlanta. Los Angeles held Buehler back to make his next start in the more comfortable surroundings of Dodger Stadium. In his only start against the Brewers, he took a tough-luck loss on July 31, allowing one run in seven innings with seven strikeouts and no walks.

Video: NLCS Gm3: Buehler on secondary pitches before Game 3

How will the bullpens line up after the starter?
Brewers: Let's just say that Sunday's travel day was welcome. Jeffress and Corey Knebel have now pitched in all five of the Brewers' postseason games. Even though there was a nice layoff between rounds, Jeffress threw 39 pitches in Games 1 and 2, and Knebel 31. Josh Hader was off limits in Game 2 after throwing a season-high 46 pitches in Game 1. Soria was off in Game 2 after pitching each of Milwaukee's first four postseason games. The off-day should provide something of a reset.

Video: NLCS Gm3: Counsell on his bullpen strategy for Game 3

Dodgers: They showed the game plan if they have a lead after seven innings. Caleb Ferguson faces the lefties, Kenta Maeda sets up and Kenley Jansen is the closer.

Video: NLCS Gm2: Jansen retires Yelich for clutch save

Are there any relievers who are unavailable?
Brewers: Probably not, although manager Craig Counsell said he'd wait until today to make that determination.

Dodgers: L.A. used seven relievers in Game 2 (all but Julio Urias), but only Pedro Baez was used for more than three outs (four), and with a Sunday day off, everybody is probably available.

Any injuries of note?
Brewers: No.

Dodgers: No.

Who is hot and who is not?
Brewers: Yelich, who surged to the finish of the regular season and was an on-base machine in the NLDS against the Rockies, is 1-for-8 with two walks in the NLCS after his game-ending groundout with the tying runner in scoring position in Game 2. He credited the Dodgers for "making pitches when they have to." Moustakas went 0-for-3 Saturday to snap a 10-game postseason hitting streak.

Video: NLCS Gm2: Yelich on dropping Game 2 to the Dodgers

Dodgers: Turner, Taylor and Pederson each had two hits in Game 2. Taylor is 5-for-9 in the series. Bellinger got his first hit of the postseason. Baez has four strikeouts in 2 1/3 innings. Alex Wood has allowed homers in his past two postseason appearances.

Video: NLCS Gm2: Bellinger, Turner spark Game 2 rally

Anything else fans might want to know?
The Brewers and Dodgers set a record for most combined pitching appearances through two games of an LCS with 27. With 14, Los Angeles has the record for one team.

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001.

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy and like him on Facebook.

Milwaukee Brewers, Los Angeles Dodgers, Walker Buehler, Jhoulys Chacin

Sale out of hospital, returns to Sox on Tuesday

MLB.com @IanMBrowne

HOUSTON -- Red Sox ace Chris Sale was released from Massachusetts General Hospital and will rejoin the team in Houston for the American League Championship Series on Tuesday.

Sale was admitted to the hospital on Sunday because of a stomach illness. After a battery of tests, it was determined that Sale doesn't have any serious health issues.

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HOUSTON -- Red Sox ace Chris Sale was released from Massachusetts General Hospital and will rejoin the team in Houston for the American League Championship Series on Tuesday.

Sale was admitted to the hospital on Sunday because of a stomach illness. After a battery of tests, it was determined that Sale doesn't have any serious health issues.

View Full Game Coverage

ALCS presented by Google Assistant, Game 3: Tuesday, 5:09 p.m. ET on TBS

Red Sox manager Alex Cora said the club will wait until Sale is back with the team to make a definitive determination on when he will pitch again.

:: ALCS schedule and results ::

Before becoming ill following his start in Saturday night's Game 1, Sale was scheduled to pitch next in Game 5 on Thursday.

"We need him to get here first and then see how he feels," said Cora. "It's more than the Red Sox; it's about the individual. So everything I heard, he should be fine and it's a matter of him showing up and we'll talk to him and see how he feels physically and go from there."

Sale didn't look like himself in Game 1 of the ALCS, walking four and threw 86 pitches in four innings of two-run ball in the Red Sox's 7-2 loss to the Astros. The Red Sox don't believe that performance was attributed to Sale's illness, which he first mentioned after the game.

Gear up for the ALCS

The Red Sox didn't have many other details, but they could have more after Sale is back with the team.

"It's just his stomach," Cora said. "That's it. He felt ill right after the game, started throwing up. And then he decided to go to the hospital and that was it."

Red Sox-Astros G3: Lineups, matchups, FAQs

In the second half of the season, Sale suffered mild inflammation in his left shoulder and pitched just 17 innings from July 28 until the start of the playoffs. Could Sale have taken some medication for his shoulder that led to whatever caused his stomach discomfort?

"No, not that I know of," said Cora.

What was the timeline of when Sale went to the hospital?

"I think it was probably in the morning, like I want to say 2 in the morning, 3 in the morning," Cora said. "That's what I hear. When I got to the ballpark -- actually, [trainer] Brad [Pearson] texted me about it. When I got to the ballpark they told me he was there. Nothing serious.

"He was going to go through a battery of tests and see what was going on. And thank God it's nothing that is serious at all. Like I said, he'll be here tomorrow, and hopefully physically he's ready to go and we'll decide when he pitches."

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.

Boston Red Sox, Chris Sale

Rumors: Connecting Goldy to NYY, Harper to SF

The latest MLB free agent and trade rumors for Hot Stove season
MLB.com

As the postseason concludes, Hot Stove season begins. MLB.com is keeping track of all the latest free agent and trade rumors right here.

Could Goldschmidt be a fit for Yankees?
Oct. 15: Facing a critical juncture this offseason after missing the playoffs in 2018, the D-backs are reportedly expected to listen to offers for a number of their top players, including Paul Goldschmidt.

As the postseason concludes, Hot Stove season begins. MLB.com is keeping track of all the latest free agent and trade rumors right here.

Could Goldschmidt be a fit for Yankees?
Oct. 15: Facing a critical juncture this offseason after missing the playoffs in 2018, the D-backs are reportedly expected to listen to offers for a number of their top players, including Paul Goldschmidt.

• Complete list of free agents this offseason

The problem for Arizona, as ESPN's Buster Olney noted via Twitter, is that there aren't a lot of obvious fits for Goldschmidt, as many contenders are set at first base. However, Olney speculates that the Yankees could enter the mix for the six-time All-Star, who can become a free agent after the 2019 season.

Tweet from @Buster_ESPN: As has been reported, the D-Backs will listen to offers on their best players, including Paul Goldschmidt. Most contenders are locked in at 1B for 2019; the Cubs have Rizzo, for example. Total speculation: One team that could be a great fit for a Goldschmidt deal -- the Yankees.

Tweet from @Buster_ESPN: This is all speculation... To add: for Goldschmidt, hitting in Yankee Stadium as he went through his free-agent season, in the middle of a deep lineup, could be a great development for him, as well.

New York's current options at first base include in-season acquisition Luke Voit and Greg Bird, who hasn't been able to stay healthy or consistently produce during his big league tenure. The Yankees will need to decide if either player is a long-term answer.

Voit seemingly has the inside edge to earn a starting job in 2019, as he hit .322 with 15 homers in only 47 games with the club and became an everyday lineup fixture down the stretch. But Voit will be 28 on Opening Day, and he'll need to show that his 2018 performance was not a fluke.

Meanwhile, Goldschmidt remains one of the best hitters in baseball, recording a .290 average with 33 homers and a .922 OPS in 2018, and he could help the Yankees close the gap with the Red Sox and Astros in the American League.

Giants could pursue Harper, but competition expected to be fierce
Oct. 15: Although Bryce Harper and Manny Machado, the two biggest names set to hit free agency this offseason, play different positions, the markets for both players will surely dovetail in some way.

For instance, the Giants are expected to be one of the suitors for Harper, and their pursuit could be indirectly affected by the Yankees, as John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle pointed out Saturday.

With the news that shortstop Didi Gregorius is scheduled to undergo Tommy John surgery, many now speculate that the Yankees will make a greater push for Machado.

If that happens, and New York comes away with Machado, it could in turn make the Dodgers -- Machado's current team -- more likely to make a serious push for Harper. That could be bad news for the Giants, as Los Angeles will likely be able to outbid San Francisco for Harper and is arguably a more attractive landing spot for the superstar outfielder.

Rockies facing big questions this offseason
Oct. 15: Before the Rockies make a bid for their third straight postseason appearance in 2019, they will need to answer a number of pressing questions about their roster this offseason, which Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post broke down Sunday.

Among those questions is what to do about impending free agents DJ LeMahieu, Carlos Gonzalez and Adam Ottavino. Saunders considers it unlikely that the Rockies will re-sign LeMahieu and Ottavino, and he speculates that the club could look to move on from Gonzalez as well, even though the outfielder has expressed interest in returning.

While that would give Colorado three big holes to address, it doesn't necessarily mean the club will look to the free-agent market for replacements, especially considering the mixed results the Rockies have gotten from recent signings such as Ian Desmond, Wade Davis, Bryan Shaw and Jake McGee, a quartet that will take up a sizable portion of the payroll in 2019. The Rockies may also look to work on a contract extension with Nolan Arenado, who can become a free agent after next season.

As a result, greater importance will likely be placed on low-cost youngsters such as David Dahl, Ryan McMahon, Garrett Hampson, Brendan Rodgers and Raimel Tapia in 2019.

Does Gregorius' injury set stage for Machado to join Yankees?
Oct. 12: With Didi Gregorius set to undergo Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, the shortstop position is now an unexpected question mark for the Yankees.

The speculation, of course, is that Gregorius' injury may only increase the Yankees' interest in impending free agent Manny Machado, who was already expected to be on the club's offseason radar as a potential option at third base.

Tweet from @JonHeyman: Could the didi news trigger yankees��� interest in Machado? MM has played a much better ss in LA, is believed interested in yankees.

Machado, a two-time Gold Glove Award winner at the hot corner, struggled defensively at shortstop with the Orioles this season (-18 defensive runs saved), but he has been much improved since joining the Dodgers in a July trade (6 DRS).

Machado's interest in joining the Yankees was documented back in August, when MLB Network insider Jon Heyman reported for Fancred Sports that people close to the slugger were suggesting that the club was his first choice in free agency.

Gregorius has been worth 8.7 Wins Above Replacement (WAR) over the past two seasons, so the Yankees aren't going to be in a hurry to move on from him. But the shortstop can become a free agent next offseason, and signing Machado would give the Yankees extra leverage in contract negotiations with Gregorius, as well as insurance in case his recovery from Tommy John surgery doesn't go smoothly.

The Yankees could also sign Machado and then work out an extension with Gregorius to secure the left side of their infield into the next decade, but they would need to trade or find a new position for third baseman Miguel Andujar.

Kershaw could exercise opt-out clause
Oct. 12: Clayton Kershaw, who is scheduled to start the opener of the National League Championship Series for the Dodgers tonight vs. the Brewers, is expected to opt out of his contract with Los Angeles after this season and test the free-agent waters, according to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman.

Kershaw, 30, has two years and just over $70 million remaining on a seven-year, $215 million contract he signed with the Dodgers prior to the 2014 season.

The '14 NL MVP Award winner and three-time NL Cy Young Award winner has dealt with lingering back issues the past three seasons and was limited to just 26 starts this year, so it is far from certain that the left-hander would be able to find a suitor for another longterm deal. However, he'd like be able to sign for more than the two years he has left on his current pact with the Dodgers.

Video: ARI@SD: Corbin goes scoreless in final start of 2018

Cashman: Yankees will try to trade Gray
Oct. 12: When the Yankees acquired Sonny Gray from the A's in July 2017, it wasn't just a short-term move. Gray is under team control through '19, and he was expected to be an important part of New York's rotation at least until the end of that season.

It hasn't worked out that way. After posting a 4.90 ERA over 30 appearances (23 starts) in 2018, Gray was left off the Yankees' American League Wild Card Game and ALDS rosters. And now, he may now be on his way out of town.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Friday that the club will try to trade Gray this offseason.

"It hasn't worked out thus far," Cashman said. "I think he's extremely talented. I think that we'll enter the winter, unfortunately, open-minded to a relocation. Probably, if he can maximize his abilities, it will more likely be best somewhere else. But then it comes down to the final decision of the price, in terms of trade acquisition and matching up with somebody. If we match up, then I think, yeah, it's probably best to try this somewhere else."

Although Gray's value is down, New York can sell the fact that the righty recorded a 3.17 ERA with a 1.16 WHIP and a 9.9 K/9 rate on the road (6.98 ERA, 1.90 WHIP, 6.8 K/9 rate at Yankee Stadium) as proof that he can still be a viable big league starter in a different environment.

Yankees expected to pursue Corbin
Oct. 11: The Yankees are expected to target left-hander Patrick Corbin in free agency this winter, according to a report from MLB Network Insider Jon Heyman on Thursday.

New York will be looking to bolster its starting rotation after a shaky playoff performance in its Division Series loss to the Red Sox -- Luis Severino, J.A. Happ and CC Sabathia all struggled.

Happ and Sabathia will both be free agents this offseason. The Yankees could try to re-sign one or both of the left-handers, per Heyman.

Corbin, 29, is coming off a career year with the D-backs. He made the National League All-Star team for the second time in his career and set career-best marks with a 3.15 ERA, 1.050 WHIP and 246 strikeouts in 33 starts. More >

Cardinals re-sign Wainwright for 2019
Oct. 11: The Cardinals' pitching staff next season will once again include Adam Wainwright. The longtime leader of the rotation agreed Thursday to a one-year contract for 2019, which will be his 15th season with the club.

The two sides ended any speculation about the right-hander's future when they announced the extension, which will follow a five-year, $97.5 million contract that expired with this season. Financial terms of Wainwright's next deal were not disclosed by the club.

Wainwright's return further fills a rotation teeming with options for 2019. The Cardinals have several other starters -- including Carlos Martinez, Miles Mikolas, Michael Wacha, Jack Flaherty, Alex Reyes, Luke Weaver, Austin Gomber, John Gant and Daniel Poncedeleon -- also under contract. More >

Bryant turns down $200 million extension
Oct. 10: The Cubs made an attempt to lock up Kris Bryant to a multiyear deal in the neighborhood of $200 million, but the superstar third baseman turned down the deal in recent months, a source confirmed to MLB.com on Wednesday. ESPN's Dave Kaplan was the first to report the offer and its rejection. The club has not confirmed such an offer.

Bryant and agent Scott Boras are inclined to proceed on a year-by-year salary increase through arbitration before Bryant becomes a free agent after the 2021 season. Bryant earned a record $10.85 million in 2018, the highest salary a player has earned in his first year of arbitration.

Should Bryant plan to wait out his final four years of club control and hit the free-agent market, the Cubs could face the possibility of losing him for nothing. In that context, Bryant might be a valuable trade commodity as a former National League MVP Award winner who is under club control for three more seasons. More >

Marlins deal Barraclough amid push for Mesa brothers
Oct. 10: The Marlins continue to build up more international dollars for their pursuit of Cuban prospects Victor Victor Mesa, Victor Mesa Jr. and Sandy Gaston.

On Wednesday, they traded right-hander Kyle Barraclough to the Nationals for an undisclosed amount of international bonus pool money. It was the Marlins' second trade in four days after dealing prospect Ryan Lillie to the Reds on Saturday, also for international pool money.

Before the two deals, the Marlins had $4.3 million in their international allotment, the second most of any team. Only the Orioles, at $6.7 million, have more. How much that gap has narrowed isn't yet known.

Victor Victor Mesa, 22, and Victor Jr., 18, are both outfielders. Gaston is a 16-year-old right-hander. Victor Victor Mesa is ranked by MLB Pipeline as the top international prospect on the market, and Gaston is ranked 16th. Major League Baseball recently cleared the three players as free agents, and on Friday they had a showcase in front of about 75 scouts at Marlins Park. More >

A day before Game 3, Alex Bregman posted a video of Astros going back-to-back-to-back off Nathan Eovaldi

There may not have been an ALCS game between the Astros and Red Sox on Monday, but there was plenty of competitive fire anyway. 

With the series tied at a game apiece and Game 3 set for Houston on Tuesday night, Alex Bregman wanted to spend some of his off-day watching video tape -- as players do for research, after all.

Every club's best individual playoff performance

From MadBum to Mr. October, these runs went down in franchise lore
MLB.com @williamfleitch

One of the many joys of baseball's postseason is how one player can make such an outsized difference. There's no better time for a player to go on a hot streak than in the playoffs, when he's able to carry his team for a whole series -- maybe even to a championship. Baseball is a game of ebbs and flows, of zeniths and nadirs, and everyone wants to break out and have a heater in October.

With that in mind, we look at the greatest postseason runs by a player on each of baseball's 30 teams. These are the sort of streaks that make legends in their hometowns ... the sort of runs we'll talk about forever.

One of the many joys of baseball's postseason is how one player can make such an outsized difference. There's no better time for a player to go on a hot streak than in the playoffs, when he's able to carry his team for a whole series -- maybe even to a championship. Baseball is a game of ebbs and flows, of zeniths and nadirs, and everyone wants to break out and have a heater in October.

With that in mind, we look at the greatest postseason runs by a player on each of baseball's 30 teams. These are the sort of streaks that make legends in their hometowns ... the sort of runs we'll talk about forever.

Note: We're sticking to the divisional era here, which goes back to 1969, and is the dawn of the modern postseason.

AMERICAN LEAGUE EAST

Blue Jays: Paul Molitor, 1993
.447/.527/.851, World Series MVP
Everyone remembers the Joe Carter homer, but Molitor was a monster that whole postseason for the Blue Jays at the age of 37. He was terrific back in 1982 for the Brewers, too.

Orioles: Brooks Robinson, 1970
.485/.471/.788, World Series MVP
This was, of course, the same World Series in which he made the ridiculous play at third base … though with Robinson, it's always a question of which ridiculous play.

Video: #WeKnowPostseason: Robinson's Play

Rays: James Shields, 2008
2-2, 25 IP, 2.88 ERA
This is where the "Big Game James" nickname came from, even if it maybe lasted a year or two longer than it should have.

Red Sox: David Ortiz, 2004
.400/.515/.764, ALCS MVP
It's rather difficult, all told, to figure out which Ortiz postseason to pick: He had an OPS over 1.204 in October for all three of the Red Sox championship teams he played for.

Video: 2004 ALCS Gm7: Ortiz's homer gives Red Sox early lead

Yankees: Reggie Jackson, 1978
.417/.511/.806
The highest qualified OPS by Yankees are, in fact, 2018 Aaron Judge and 2006 Derek Jeter ... but how do you not pick Mr. October?

AL CENTRAL

Indians: Orel Hershiser, 1995
4-1, 35 1/3 IP, 1.53 ERA, ALCS MVP
The season with the other Indians' World Series loss -- no, the other one -- featured vintage Hershiser ... and he split a couple of duels with Greg Maddux in the World Series, too.

Royals: Danny Jackson, 1985
2-1, 26 IP, 1.04 ERA
Bret Saberhagen is remembered as the hero of this Royals team -- along with Don Denkinger, of course -- but Jackson was actually the best pitcher for the Royals that postseason.

Tigers: Alan Trammell, 1984
.419/.500/.806, World Series MVP
Trammell put the perfect capper on the Tigers' dream season. This was a quiet argument for Trammell's Hall of Fame candidacy.

Twins: Jack Morris, 1991
4-0, 36 1/3 IP, 2.23 ERA, World Series MVP
Speaking of the Hall of Fame ... this postseason is almost certainly why Morris currently has a plaque in Cooperstown.

Video: 1991 WS Gm7: Morris' 10-inning shutout

White Sox: Jermaine Dye, 2005
.311/.415/.444, World Series MVP
Several White Sox players had a higher OPS than Dye that postseason -- including Joe Crede, Scott Podsednik and Paul Konerko -- but you've got to go with the World Series MVP.

AL WEST

Angels: Francisco Rodriguez, 2002
5-1, 18 2/3 IP, 1.93 ERA
Back when there were more rigid bullpen roles, K-Rod was deployed liberally and devastatingly in 2002, back when he was 20 years old.

Astros: Carlos Beltran, 2004
.435/.536/1.022
Cardinals fans will be having nightmares about 2004 Carlos Beltran for decades to come ... and they won that series.

Video: 2004 NLCS Gm4: Beltran hits eighth homer of playoffs

Athletics: Dave Stewart, 1989
4-0, 32 IP, 2.25 ERA, World Series MVP
Stewart had a career 2.77 postseason ERA in 133 innings ... he would actually win the ALCS MVP the very next season, too.

Mariners: Ken Griffey Jr., 1995
.364/.442/.818
Jay Buhner was just as good as The Kid in 1995 ... but Griffey is Griffey.

Rangers: Juan Gonzalez, 1996
.438/.526/1.375
The Rangers actually lost this Division Series in four games, but good heavens, was Juan Gone ever a monster, hitting five homers in four games.

Video: 1996 ALDS Gm4: Juan Gonzalez's fifth home run of ALDS

NATIONAL LEAGUE EAST

Braves: John Smoltz, 1996
4-1, 38 IP, 0.95 ERA
You could also go with Greg Maddux's 1995 run -- since the Braves won the World Series that year, after all -- and you wouldn't be wrong.

Marlins: Josh Beckett, 2003
2-2, 42 2/3 IP, 2.11 ERA, World Series MVP
After the Yankees and Red Sox had their first of two epic postseason battles, Beckett was happy to pick up the pieces in the World Series.

Video: WS Gm6: Beckett shuts out Yanks as Marlins win series

Mets: Bobby Ojeda, 1986
2-0, 27 IP, 2.33 ERA
Of all the great Mets starters on that team, it was Ojeda who had the best postseason.

Nationals: Stephen Strasburg, 2017
1-1, 14 IP, 0.00 ERA
Since we're excluding the Expos -- if we weren't, Steve Rogers in 1981 would be the obvious answer here -- we must dig into the gruesome land of the Nationals' postseason failures. Strasburg has the ultimate Nationals playoff line: 0 earned runs, 1 loss.

Video: WSH@CHC Gm4: Strasburg K's 12 over seven scoreless

Phillies: Cliff Lee, 2009
4-0, 40 1/3 IP, 1.56 ERA
Cole Hamels had the World Series MVP in '08, but Lee was actually better, in five more innings.

NL CENTRAL

Brewers: Ryan Braun, 2011
.405/.468/.714
This postseason performance feels like a lifetime ago, but it's one the Brewers sure would appreciate a repeat of.

Cardinals: David Freese, 2011
.397/.465/.794, NLCS MVP, World Series MVP
Freese actually struggled in the NLDS this season ... though he ended up making up for it.

Video: Must C Comeback: Freese's triple ties it up in ninth

Cubs: Jon Lester, 2016
3-1, 35 2/3 IP, 2.02 ERA, NLCS co-MVP
Lester still feels like the postseason starter Cubs fans trust most, and probably always will.

Pirates: Willie Stargell, 1979
.415/.435/.927, NLCS MVP, World Series MVP
He also shared the regular-season MVP Award this year, pulling off the rare trifecta.

Reds: Johnny Bench, 1976
.444/.464/.926, World Series MVP
Bench was as dominant as the Reds were in this matter-of-fact World Series sweep.

NL WEST

D-backs: Curt Schilling, 2001
4-0, 48 1/3 IP, 1.12 ERA, World Series co-MVP
Randy Johnson's line this exact 2001 postseason: 5-1, 41 1/3 IP, 1.52 ERA. That is ... difficult to beat.

Video: WS2001 Gm4: Schilling comes up clutch on short rest

Dodgers: Hershiser, 1988
3-0, 1 SV, 42 2/3 IP, 1.05 ERA, NLCS MVP, World Series MVP
Hershiser is the only pitcher to be on this list twice ... and how could he not be?

Giants: Madison Bumgarner, 2014
4-1, 1 SV, 52 2/3 IP, 1.03 ERA, NLCS MVP, World Series MVP
This is an obvious pick, but at this point I'd like to remind you that Barry Bonds put up a .356/.581/.978 in 2002.

Video: WS2014 Gm7: Bumgarner sets postseason innings record

Padres: Sterling Hitchcock, 1998
3-0, 22 IP, 1.23 ERA, NLCS MVP
He gave up only one earned run in six innings in his lone World Series start ... not that it did the Padres much good.

Rockies: Kaz Matsui, 2007
.304/.347/.500
It was a strange postseason for the Rockies in 2007, but if you forget the World Series happened altogether, it was a glorious one.

Will Leitch is a columnist for MLB.com.

J.D.: 'Release by Astros made me who I am'

Martinez must conquer original organization to get chance at WS title
MLB.com @IanMBrowne

HOUSTON -- Fittingly, the journey that J.D. Martinez is on as he tries to win a World Series for the first time in his career will take him to Minute Maid Park this week.

Martinez and the Red Sox come to town tied, 1-1, in this American League Championship Series. Games 3 through 5 are in Houston from Tuesday through Thursday.

View Full Game Coverage

HOUSTON -- Fittingly, the journey that J.D. Martinez is on as he tries to win a World Series for the first time in his career will take him to Minute Maid Park this week.

Martinez and the Red Sox come to town tied, 1-1, in this American League Championship Series. Games 3 through 5 are in Houston from Tuesday through Thursday.

View Full Game Coverage

ALCS presented by Google Assistant, Game 3: Tuesday, 5:09 p.m. ET on TBS

It is back to the old stomping grounds for the masher in the middle of the Boston batting order.

Martinez, who debuted with Houston in 2011, had hoped to play a big role for a then rebuilding Astros franchise, one that was confident it would eventually climb to the top of baseball's mountain.

:: ALCS schedule and results ::

But Martinez had those hopes taken away coldly on March 22, 2014, when he was released by the club that had drafted and developed him due to a logjam in the outfield.

The Astros did turn into a powerhouse, winning the World Series last year.

Gear up for the ALCS

Martinez turned into a powerful hitter -- one of the finest and most dangerous in the game. First, he went to Detroit and made a name for himself. Then Martinez became a trade acquisition for the ages with the D-backs last summer. And with the spotlight of Boston on him after signing as a free agent back in February, Martinez has swiftly turned into one of the most impactful acquisitions in Red Sox history.

So in a way, everything worked out for both sides.

Red Sox-Astros G3: Lineups, matchups, FAQs

Although hindsight is always 20/20, the decision for the Astros to let Martinez go when they did is defensible when you look at the pedestrian numbers he had there. In 975 plate appearances from 2011-13, Martinez slashed .251/.300/.387 with 24 homers and 126 RBIs.

Martinez has made 2,792 regular-season plate appearances since leaving the Astros, slashing .307/.371/.586 with 171 homers and 480 RBIs. The timing was unfortunate for Houston, because Martinez had just started to discover the art of launch angle during the winter before he was released. But his launch party would start in Detroit, before continuing to other destinations.

Video: ALCS Gm1: Martinez on coming to Boston this season

All of that brings us to this week and Martinez's tantalizing opportunity to stick it to the Astros and stop their path short of a second straight World Series title. To do that, he will have to break out of his early ALCS funk; the right-handed hitter is 0-for-7 with a walk and three strikeouts.

Before Game 2, Astros manager AJ Hinch had called Mookie Betts a ticking time bomb. And there Betts was, breaking out of his postseason rut with a two-double performance later that night. Now it could be Martinez's turn to do the same.

Part of the reason Martinez has the ability to go off and carry the lineup like he has done several times this season is due to the fire the Astros built within him by releasing him at the age of 26.

Video: ALCS Gm1: Betts on learning from J.D. Martinez

"I think it made me who I am," Martinez told MLB.com earlier this season. "I've always been hungry, but when people ask what drives you -- 'How do you stay so driven throughout this whole thing?' -- you just don't stop. It's every single day. The people that know me and the people that love me and are in my life see it.

"My brother-in-law came up to me and was like, 'Dude, I admire your life and what you do and everything you do. It's amazing. I wouldn't want it for me. Because the amount of time you spend in this game, the amount of time away from your family, that's stuff you'll never get back.'

"But it's my passion, it's my love, it's what I love to do. To me, that took my [intensity] to another level where when you have something taken away. … It's like the famous expression, you don't realize you love something until it's gone."'

Now it is the baseball that is so often gone when Martinez steps to the plate.

This season, Martinez hit .330 with 43 homers and an MLB-leading 130 RBIs. He bashed a three-run homer to help sink the Yankees in Game 1 of the AL Division Series.

Video: MLB Tonight breaks down J.D. Martinez this season

It is likely that Martinez will have something to say about the ALCS before it is over.

But if he does "do damage," as the slogan for this Red Sox postseason drive goes, revenge against his former team won't be what drives him. In a way, Martinez is thankful to the Astros.

"I mean, I learned a lot from Houston. And you know what? It made me who I am and there's really no animosity there," Martinez said. "In a sense, they did me a favor by allowing me to leave and going to play on another team. And if it wasn't for that, I probably wouldn't be here right now. Who knows where I would have been?"

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.

Boston Red Sox, J.D. Martinez

Roberts not concerned with Machado's hustle

Turner, Muncy trade lineup spots for Game 3
MLB.com

LOS ANGELES -- Don't like the look of Manny Machado coasting down the first-base line after hitting a routine grounder, especially in the postseason?

OK, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts hears you, but now probably isn't the optimal time to play disciplinarian with one of the most-feared hitters still playing this year.

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LOS ANGELES -- Don't like the look of Manny Machado coasting down the first-base line after hitting a routine grounder, especially in the postseason?

OK, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts hears you, but now probably isn't the optimal time to play disciplinarian with one of the most-feared hitters still playing this year.

View Full Game Coverage

NLCS presented by Google Assistant, Game 4: Tuesday, 9:09 p.m. ET/6:09 PT on FS1

:: NLCS schedule and results ::

"I know that he's doing a lot of things to help us win games," Roberts said. "I don't feel a need to have to address it. Some guys do that and take it, 'I'm going to run so hard because I'm so mad.' He's guilty of going the other way. I don't think it's a disrespect to his teammates."

Roberts said that for all Machado does well offensively and defensively -- and at times exceptionally -- sometimes you just pick your battles.

"There's no perfect player," Roberts said. "A guy that posts every inning is hard to come by these days. For me, the net, it's not even close."

Roberts tweaks lineup with Hader in mind
Don't mess with a good thing -- so don't mess with Justin Turner's spot in the lineup, right?

But Roberts flipped Turner and Max Muncy for Game 3. Turner had hit second in 47 of the Dodgers' previous 49 games, including six postseason games, but Turner hit third and Muncy hit second on Monday. That's because Roberts sees an opportunity to counter Brewers left-handed reliever Josh Hader by stacking right-handers against him late in the game.

Starting with Turner, the next six batters in the Dodgers lineup hit right-handed or are switch-hitters. "It doesn't tinker too much, but what it does is it guards potentially against Hader trying to get a run," Roberts said.

And moving Turner out of his spot? Turner had a 1.027 OPS hitting second in 51 regular-season games this season. He had a .783 OPS in 45 games hitting third.

"I just don't think that's too much," Roberts said. "We don't lose too much."

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001.

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Los Angeles Dodgers, Manny Machado, Max Muncy, Justin Turner

Astros' production at home surging in October

Houston's offense at Minute Maid Park morphs from so-so to so great in postseason
MLB.com @RichardJustice

HOUSTON -- Something unexpected -- or maybe it's completely expected -- has happened to the Astros at Minute Maid Park the past two Octobers. They've morphed into a great offensive team. Not an OK team. Not even a good team. Better than that. Actually way better than that.

On one level, this should not qualify as shocking given that the Astros have put together a pair of 100-win seasons and are attempting to win their second straight World Series title as they prepare to host the Red Sox in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series on Tuesday.

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HOUSTON -- Something unexpected -- or maybe it's completely expected -- has happened to the Astros at Minute Maid Park the past two Octobers. They've morphed into a great offensive team. Not an OK team. Not even a good team. Better than that. Actually way better than that.

On one level, this should not qualify as shocking given that the Astros have put together a pair of 100-win seasons and are attempting to win their second straight World Series title as they prepare to host the Red Sox in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series on Tuesday.

View Full Game Coverage

ALCS presented by Google Assistant, Game 3: Tuesday, 5:09 p.m. ET/4:09 CT on TBS

Those postseason numbers at Minute Maid Park stand in stark contrast to their regular-season production at home, when the Astros have not been a great offensive team. Nor is their won-loss record in Houston all that extraordinary.

:: ALCS schedule and results ::

Let's go to the Astros' regular-season numbers:

• 57-24 on the road this season (best in the Majors)
• 46-35 at Minute Maid Park (11th overall)

Offense?

• Home: 4.60 runs per game (12th)
• Road: 5.23 runs per game (3rd)

You can dig deep into the numbers and not come up with a satisfying explanation. Are the Astros' right-handed hitters too pull happy -- that is, too tempted by the short left-field wall?

Shop Astros postseason gear

Or are they not pull happy enough? Or, as MLB.com's Mike Petriello suggested in June, Minute Maid Park may have become a pitcher-friendly ballpark over the past two seasons with the removal of Tal's Hill in center field and the addition of a new hitter's background (which, ESPN's Alex Rodriguez suggested this summer, isn't nearly large enough). The Astros' 3.50 home ERA over the past two regular seasons is the third-lowest in baseball. Their 3.74 ERA on the road is fifth.

"I have no idea," Astros pitcher Dallas Keuchel said. "Our park plays really weird. And the gaps, center field, and then it flies out in the Crawford boxes, and then right field, too. ... It's just one of those things where you can't think about that while you're playing. While I'm watching a game, I might think about it."

Red Sox-Astros G3: Lineups, matchups, FAQs

Video: ALCS Gm3: Keuchel discusses home atmosphere

And then there's October. Whether it's better focus or performing well under pressure or inexplicable randomness, the numbers are significantly different from the regular season.

The Astros are 10-1 at home over the past two postseasons, and they have scored 5.55 runs per game. According to Statcast™ data, the Astros have a .284 expected batting average at home in the 2017-18 playoffs. That's better than any team did during the regular season on any home field.

All things considered -- circumstances, level of competition -- this is an extraordinary number, higher than the .263 xBA which the Red Sox produced to lead the Majors during the regular season.

If there's a simple explanation, it could be that a talented team takes its game to a higher level when the lights are the brightest and the stakes the highest.

Video: How They Got There: Astros advance to the ALCS

"Baseball is hard and sometimes you get in these streaks or these unexplainable situations where, I don't know," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "If we had it figured out, I wouldn't let us struggle one bit. I'd just sprinkle that magic dust on these guys every time we come home. But we've put up some pretty explosive numbers in this ballpark, any number of games. So I don't look any further into it than that."

On the postseason spike, he said: "We're a good team. We play well in the postseason. I don't know. We lock in obviously. You see George Springer snap his fingers, and all of a sudden has a crazy October thus far. You watch what Marwin Gonzalez is doing. You watch what different players do -- [like] Alex Bregman. They're good players, and they play well when it matters most."

Video: Springer sets club record with 10 postseason dingers

Richard Justice has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2011. Read his columns, listen to his podcast and follow him on Twitter at @RichardJustice.

Houston Astros

First-time dad Joc leads off in Game 3

Dodgers outfielder welcomed baby girl on Sunday
MLB.com

Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson spent the off-day becoming a first-time father. Pederson and wife, Kelsey, welcomed a baby girl on Sunday evening. Poppy Jett Pederson was born at 6:27 p.m., weighing 7 pounds, 11 ounces, the club announced.

Pederson was back with the Dodgers and in the lineup batting leadoff for Game 3 of the National League Championship Series against the Brewers on Monday at Dodger Stadium.

View Full Game Coverage

Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson spent the off-day becoming a first-time father. Pederson and wife, Kelsey, welcomed a baby girl on Sunday evening. Poppy Jett Pederson was born at 6:27 p.m., weighing 7 pounds, 11 ounces, the club announced.

Pederson was back with the Dodgers and in the lineup batting leadoff for Game 3 of the National League Championship Series against the Brewers on Monday at Dodger Stadium.

View Full Game Coverage

The 26-year-old came off the bench in Games 1 and 2, batting 2-for-3 with a pair of runs scored and a walk. With right-hander Jhoulys Chacin starting for Milwaukee, the Dodgers moved two left-handed hitters -- Pederson and Max Muncy -- to the top of their lineup.

Pederson slashed .239/.300/.534 with 18 home runs in 59 games batting leadoff during the regular season.

Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Dodgers, Joc Pederson

Astros may put Altuve at DH for ALCS Game 3

Second baseman continues to battle sore right knee, hitting slump
MLB.com @alysonfooter

HOUSTON -- In some ways, the Astros are in a familiar spot. For the second year in a row, they're in the postseason. They've also advanced to the American League Championship Series again. And, like last year, they are dominant in enough areas to suggest they may be the favorites to return to the World Series, and, perhaps, repeat as champions.

But this year hasn't been exactly like it was in 2017. One glaring difference? A year ago, Jose Altuve was in the middle of everything, capping an AL MVP Award-winning regular season by continuing to post other-worldly offensive numbers in October.

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HOUSTON -- In some ways, the Astros are in a familiar spot. For the second year in a row, they're in the postseason. They've also advanced to the American League Championship Series again. And, like last year, they are dominant in enough areas to suggest they may be the favorites to return to the World Series, and, perhaps, repeat as champions.

But this year hasn't been exactly like it was in 2017. One glaring difference? A year ago, Jose Altuve was in the middle of everything, capping an AL MVP Award-winning regular season by continuing to post other-worldly offensive numbers in October.

View Full Game Coverage

ALCS presented by Google Assistant, Game 3: Tuesday, 5:09 p.m. ET/4:09 CT on TBS

:: ALCS schedule and results ::

It's been quieter this time around for the 28-year-old Altuve, who has one hit in eight at-bats through the first two games of the ALCS.

"I feel bad for him, because he cares so much, and he wants to be there," Astros manager AJ Hinch said on Monday, an off-day, following the team's split with the Red Sox in the opening set at Fenway Park over the weekend.

Red Sox-Astros G3: Lineups, matchups, FAQs

Altuve is nursing a sore right knee, an issue for much of the regular season that continues to be a problem as Houston progresses deeper into October. Altuve missed nearly a month of games with the injury, and though he's been off the disabled list since Aug. 21 and hasn't missed any games in the postseason, it's clear he's not in peak playoff form.

Hinch said he's leaning toward inserting Altuve into the lineup as the designated hitter for Game 3 of the ALCS on Tuesday at Minute Maid Park, with Marwin Gonzalez getting the start at second base.

"We're going to play three days in a row here," Hinch said. "So I talked to him about that [Sunday], and just for him to continue to give us what he's got. And he's fine. Obviously it didn't hurt his swing in the ninth inning last night. He's able to be a productive player. But he's battling it a little bit."

Gear up for the ALCS

Altuve lined a long single off Boston closer Craig Kimbrel in the ninth on Sunday, contributing to the Astros' near-comeback effort in a 7-5 loss to the Red Sox. Altuve's hit bounced off the Green Monster, scoring George Springer, and it looked like Altuve might have a clear pathway to second. But he stopped after his foot slipped slightly as he stepped on first base.

Video: ALCS Gm2: Altuve drives in Springer with a single

Players were instructed to stay home and rest on Monday after landing in Houston from Boston around 5 a.m. CT, so Hinch didn't have a lot of updated information about the health status of Altuve or Gonzalez, who crashed into the left field wall -- an area with no padding -- attempting to field a fly ball in the third inning on Sunday.

Video: ALCS Gm2: Gonzalez shaken up, Pearce doubles to left

But Hinch did mention that he talked to Altuve after Sunday's game about DH-ing Tuesday, and that Altuve was amenable.

"I started talking to him about how he's feeling, and my thought that I might want to just take him off half the game on the defensive side," Hinch said. "His first reaction was, 'Whatever you think is best for our guys.'"

Altuve has five hits this postseason. He was 4-for-14 with a home run in the AL Division Series against the Indians. In 2017, Altuve paced the Astros' offense in the first two rounds, slashing .533/.632/.1.133 in the ALDS and .320/.414/.560 in the ALCS.

His track record suggests he still could contribute mightily in the remaining games of the postseason this time around, but the health of his knee will likely dictate how much of a presence his has as the playoffs progress. But even with the uncertainty surrounding his health, there are no questions about the impact Altuve has, just by his name being in the lineup every day.

"I don't know how to define it or describe it other than to say that the team feels it," Hinch said. "They know when he's in the middle of the order. If you look at our record, when he's in the lineup, regardless of whether he's playing MVP caliber or whether he's slightly below that ... there's a calmness. He's a very stable part of our offense."

Alyson Footer is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter.

Houston Astros, Jose Altuve

Betts giving fans 'something they'll remember'

Boston's speedy outfielder comes through in clutch to tie ALCS
MLB.com @MikeLupica

Mike Trout wasn't the best all-around player in baseball this year. Mookie Betts was. That is saying plenty, just because there is so little left to say about Trout. And when the Red Sox needed Betts to show up on Sunday night at Fenway Park and turn Red Sox vs. Astros into a best-of-five series, that is exactly what Mookie Betts did.

ALCS presented by Google Assistant, Game 3: Tuesday, 5:09 p.m. ET on TBS

View Full Game Coverage

Mike Trout wasn't the best all-around player in baseball this year. Mookie Betts was. That is saying plenty, just because there is so little left to say about Trout. And when the Red Sox needed Betts to show up on Sunday night at Fenway Park and turn Red Sox vs. Astros into a best-of-five series, that is exactly what Mookie Betts did.

ALCS presented by Google Assistant, Game 3: Tuesday, 5:09 p.m. ET on TBS

View Full Game Coverage

:: ALCS schedule and results ::

He doubled off the wall in center field in the first inning, and before the frame was over, the Red Sox led Game 2 of the American League Championship Series, 2-0. Betts doubled again in the eighth, and provided Boston with an insurance run it would need a few minutes later when Craig Kimbrel once again looked like the least reliable relief pitcher the Red Sox have right now, as opposed to being their best.

On a night when Boston, after 112 victories this season, needed a victory more than it ever had, the offense began and ended with their gifted, streak-of-light right fielder.

"October keeps giving you chances to do something they'll remember," Reggie Jackson, Mr. October himself, said on Tuesday night at Yankee Stadium, before Betts and the Red Sox closed out the Yankees. "Then some can, and some can't."

Gear up for the ALCS

Betts showed he could Sunday night, when his team needed him most. Jackie Bradley Jr., who plays next to Betts in the outfield, had the biggest hit of this game, a three-run double that put Boston ahead, 5-4. Then Matt Barnes, Ryan Brasier and Rick Porcello came out of the bullpen to make that lead stand up before Kimbrel turned another postseason ninth into a theme-park ride. But on offense, Betts was opener and closer Sunday night, and the Red Sox evened the ALCS before the series shifts to Minute Maid Park.

Video: ALCS Gm2: Bradley Jr. clears bases with double

The Astros' two best players -- with absolutely no disrespect meant to George Springer, who keeps hitting like Houston's Mr. October -- have to show up at Minute Maid the way Betts did Sunday night. That means Jose Altuve, the AL MVP Award winner in 2017, and Alex Bregman, the Astros' MVP this season.

Bregman has been on base plenty in the first two games of this ALCS, and scored two runs Saturday night in Game 1. But he has yet to get a hit. Altuve has one hit and one RBI (in the ninth on Sunday night) across the first two games. It is a small sampling, of course, just two games. But Betts didn't just hit on Sunday night. He hit those two doubles with force. Now Altuve and Bregman have the chance to hit that way in their home park.

The history of October baseball is full of unlikely heroes. It is a part of the charm and part of the drama of this time of year. But you know what? It's filled with way more likely stars, like Reggie. And sometimes when your stars let you down, the way Giancarlo Stanton did in the first October of his life with the Yankees, your team loses. Stanton wasn't the only reason the Yankees lost to the Red Sox in the AL Division Series, but he didn't do very much to help them win, either.

Bregman was all over the bases on Saturday night. Altuve got a late RBI knock on Sunday. Houston is going to need more from them to beat the Red Sox, even if the Astros came into this series looking like the more complete team, despite having won fewer games than Boston during the regular season.

In the interview room after Game 2, someone mentioned to Betts that Houston manager AJ Hinch had referred to him as a "ticking time bomb" before the game.

Video: ALCS Gm2: Sox on Hinch calling Betts a 'time bomb'

Betts: "I mean, it is what it is. I just go out and do what I can to help the team win, try and be consistent in having some good at-bats and getting some timely hits and whatnot. But it's not just me. We've got 25 guys out here to win."

It is the same with the Astros. The beauty of their batting order is its depth and variety, from the time Springer leads off. Marwin Gonzalez hit a two-run homer off Game 2 starter David Price that traveled nearly 400 feet in the third inning. When Boston manager Alex Cora finally got Price out of the game in the fifth, one of the reasons was that Gonzalez was coming to the plate. With two runners on, Cora went with Barnes. Barnes struck out Gonzalez. The Red Sox still had the lead.

Josh Reddick homered for the Astros on Saturday. Yuli Gurriel hit a three-run homer off Brandon Workman that made it 7-2 for the Astros in Game 1. Betts said it's not just him. It's not just Bregman and Altuve. They still need to hit more at Minute Maid Park than they did at Fenway Park.

Starting in the bottom of the first, Betts set the table and the tone for the Red Sox, even if the Astros would get the lead later, when Gonzalez hit his big home run off Price. Betts, the Red Sox's best, showed up.

Video: ALCS Gm2: Betts smashes a double to center field

Bregman nearly responded in the top of the ninth when he hit a deep fly ball to left with Houston trailing, 7-5. That one didn't get out of Fenway. That one didn't clip the Green Monster on the way down. Not his night. Maybe in Houston. Reggie was right. October keeps giving you chances to do something they'll remember.

Mike Lupica is a columnist for MLB.com.

Boston Red Sox, Mookie Betts

Mariners statement on passing of Paul Allen

MLB.com

SEATTLE -- Seattle Mariners chairman and managing partner John Stanton issued the following statement on the passing of Paul Allen:
 
On behalf of the Seattle Mariners organization and ownership, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies to Paul's family and many friends.
 
His life and his legacy are a great example for us all. 
 
Paul had a myriad of interests and he pursued them with dedication and curiosity. He had great success in business, but his passion was working to make his community, and the world, a better place. His success in those good works are his bequest to so many whose lives he changed, and to so many whose lives will be changed by the research still underway.

SEATTLE -- Seattle Mariners chairman and managing partner John Stanton issued the following statement on the passing of Paul Allen:
 
On behalf of the Seattle Mariners organization and ownership, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies to Paul's family and many friends.
 
His life and his legacy are a great example for us all. 
 
Paul had a myriad of interests and he pursued them with dedication and curiosity. He had great success in business, but his passion was working to make his community, and the world, a better place. His success in those good works are his bequest to so many whose lives he changed, and to so many whose lives will be changed by the research still underway.

Seattle Mariners

Astros commit to anti-domestic violence cause

MLB.com @alysonfooter

HOUSTON -- The Astros have made a long-term commitment to help combat domestic violence, announcing a partnership on Monday with more than a dozen local and state agencies that advocate for the cause.

At a morning press conference at Minute Maid Park, the Astros Foundation revealed a partnership with the Texas Council on Family Violence (TCFV) and introduced several initiatives to raise awareness and educate the Houston community to prevent family violence.

HOUSTON -- The Astros have made a long-term commitment to help combat domestic violence, announcing a partnership on Monday with more than a dozen local and state agencies that advocate for the cause.

At a morning press conference at Minute Maid Park, the Astros Foundation revealed a partnership with the Texas Council on Family Violence (TCFV) and introduced several initiatives to raise awareness and educate the Houston community to prevent family violence.

"We're committed long term with you folks and we want to be a big help," Astros owner Jim Crane said in his opening remarks to the many advocacy group spokespeople assembled at the media event. "Being a Major League Baseball team gives you a lot of attention, and this will help create an important platform for the Houston community, and speak to a much larger audience."

The Astros Foundation will work with the TCFV Region 7 Agencies through several initiatives:

• Fliers will be posted on each of the more than 500 bathroom stalls in Minute Maid Park. The fliers will include domestic violence hotline phone numbers, as well as a list of area agencies where people can go for help.

• The Astros Foundation, after learning of needs stemming from Hurricane Harvey recovery, responded to a grant proposal by donating $214,000 to Family Services of Southeast Texas to finish off the completion of its women's center.

• The foundation is donating $10,000 to the Montgomery County Women's Shelter, and it is sponsoring several fundraisers in conjunction with The FamilyTime Crisis and Counseling Center, Fort Bend County Women's Center, Daya, Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse (AVDA) and the Houston Area Women's Center (HAWC).

• The Astros Foundation is also partnering with AVDA to facilitate the Futures Without Violence program, "Coaching Boys into Men," which teaches leaders and coaches how to break the cycle of family violence by educating the next generation. This initiative will start with the Community Leaders and Astros Youth Academy programs and with existing partner school districts.

"This program engages young male athletes to build healthy relationships," said Astros Foundation Executive Director Twila Carter. "It offers effective strategies and interactive scenarios to teach boys that violence never equals strength. It teaches tools for respectful relationships to help stop harassment abuse and sexual assault."

Back in July, the Astros sparked controversy when they acquired Roberto Osuna from the Blue Jays. Months earlier, while Osuna was a member of the Blue Jays, he was arrested in Toronto and charged with assault for an alleged incident involving his girlfriend. Osuna was placed on administrative leave and served a 75-game suspension for violating Major League Baseball's Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse policy, a punishment Osuna did not appeal.

When the Astros acquired him, Osuna was finishing his suspension and his court case was still ongoing. The case has since been resolved with Osuna accepting a 12-month peace bond, which is similar to probation.

Those circumstances put the Astros in the middle of a controversy, prompting them to reach out to area domestic violence prevention groups. Carter invited 16 organizations to a meeting to begi