BOSTON—Red Sox manager Alex Cora is sticking with David Price, saying Wednesday the left-hander will start Game 2 of the American League Championship Series against Houston despite an unprecedented history of playoff struggles.
Speaking on MLB Network radio a day after the Red Sox eliminated the New York Yankees from the AL Division Series, Cora said he plans to use Chris Sale in Game 1 of the best-of-seven series that begins at Fenway Park on Saturday night. The first-year manager said Price, the loser in the Red Sox only defeat in the ALDS, is still in line to start Game 2.
“We trust him,” Cora said last week after Price allowed three runs and got just five outs in a 6-2 loss in Game 2. “He bounced back before. We’ll talk to him and make a few adjustments and we’ll go from there.”
Nathan Eovaldi and 2016 AL Cy Young Award winner Rick Porcello are expected to start Games 3 and 4, after picking up wins in the same roles against the Yankees. The current Red Sox staff entered the series with a 0-19 post-season record as starters, and now everyone but Price has picked up a win. Price has won two games in relief in his playoff career.
In all, Price is 0-9 as a starter in the post-season and his team has lost all 10 of his career playoff starts, the longest such skid in playoff history. The latest was a five-out cameo in Game 2 against the Yankees in which he gave up homers to Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez.