Devers, Holt add needed pop to Game 3 lineup

Devers, Holt add needed pop to Game 3 lineup

David Price added another chapter to his novel of postseason failures as the Red Sox dropped Game 2 of the ALDS to the Yankees 6-2 Saturday night at Fenway Park.

Monday night at Yankee Stadium, the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox will meet for Game 3 of the American League Division Series (GameTracker).

In all, Price was charged with three runs on three hits and two walks in 1 2/3 innings - the shortest playoff start of his career, and tied with Roger Clemens for the shortest in Red Sox postseason history.

It's true. The Yankees won the 1999 ALCS (4-1) and the 2003 ALCS (4-3) and the Red Sox pulled off their epic comeback from down 3-0 to win the 2004 ALCS in seven games.

"The pitch to Sanchez was down and away, but he was leaning out there, get the head out and hit it out of the ballpark", Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. Still, he made a start two days ago. "He didn't make pitches". It was a, "Hey, David, you suck, and we're going to kick your ass".

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"We all know he's capable of that", Yankees manager Aaron Boone said.

Of all the players in this series, Price may have had the most riding on his performance. Signed to a seven-year $217 million before the 2016 season - which made him the highest-paid pitcher in baseball - he has alternated between brilliant and bad, with most of the latter example coming in his biggest starts.

It didn't take long to determine where this one was heading, mere minutes actually, as Price's career record as a playoff starter plummeted to 0-9. Price would love nothing more than to quiet the pinstripe-wearing devotees, but he'll have to do so out of the bullpen.

The early signs were not promising.

"Obviously, we're all in with this, so you ever know what can happen in Game 3, but it should be Nate 3, Rick 4", Cora said. After a pair of back-to-back walks to Gleyber Torres and Brett Gardner, Andrew McCutchen got in on the fun, too, this time with an RBI single that inflated the Yankees' lead to 3-0.

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The Yankees' offensive barrage also included a home run from Aaron Judge in the top of the first ("I mean, everybody knows that Judge has way more power than me", Sanchez joked after the game). J.D. Martinez and Rafael Devers knocked the runs in.

"I'm not sure", Price said, when asked what was behind his command issues. As Reggie Jackson once said, they don't boo nobodies. "And that's something I wasn't able to do tonight". A loss in Game 3 would put the Red Sox down two games to one.

And it almost happened that way. It was the first time in 299 regular-season and postseason starts that Price failed to strike out a batter.

With four more years and $127 million left on Price contract - he has an opt-out clause, but is unlikely to exercise it - there is plenty of time to debate whether his acute postseason woes are some sort of character flaw, such as a sheer inability to handle the pressure, or a random fluke of statistics and small sample sizes.

Judge homered for the third straight playoff game, a 445-foot shot that landed in the back row of seats above the Green Monster, high above the 379-foot marker and about 10 feet to the left of the pole flying an American flag blowing straight out.

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"My spirits aren't down", he said. "That's what I look forward to doing".

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