Astros Fans Rally Before Playoff Game Against Red Sox

Astros Fans Rally Before Playoff Game Against Red Sox

He is also the type of pitcher who might let the natural adrenaline of a postseason game impact his performance a little bit.

After Nunez was removed from a game September 25 (his only game since September 9) when he aggravated the knee problem, the Red Sox expressed confidence that he'd be available against the Astros. Houston's bullpen is one of the best in baseball, as Chris Devenski and Luke Gregorson shut down the Sox in the seventh and eighth innings. Rick Porcello, meanwhile, has turned in one of the poorest year-after-a-Cy-Young seasons in memory.

So while it's true that there are reasons for worry tonight as the Sox open their playoff run against the slugging Houston Astros, there are reasons for optimism, too. Red Sox need to find some offense somewhere. "I'm grateful that we got some experience in 2015 and hopefully that will carry us to the championship series", he said. Incredible day for the MVP candidate.

Altuve (3-for-4, three RBIs) became the first player in franchise history to homer three times in a postseason game, doing so twice off Sale (0-1). There's a segment of Red Sox fans who just won't be happy until Farrell's gone. He'll be opposite Justin Verlander, and he needs to bring his best stuff. I can see the Yankees winning Game 1, then losing three in a row.

- Healthy Hanley. If the Red Sox could get a good series from Ramirez it would be a boost to the lineup after he struggled through a subpar season while dealing with injuries.

He returned 10 days later, but his knee swelled again after just one game and he returned to the DL and missed three weeks.

- Farrell Factor. The Red Sox manager brings more postseason experience to this series than Hinch after leading Boston to its 2013 championship and reaching the playoffs a year ago.

Altuve wins batting title, Astros beat Red Sox
Moreland has been here before; Ramirez has been terrific in the postseason; Devers could be what Xander Bogaerts was in 2013. They need to assume Game 3 in Boston is a lost cause, and hope the baseball gods smile on them when it comes to pass.

So after all the angst and all the moaning, the 2017 Boston Red Sox ended up pretty much where we expected prior to the start of the season. Tie ballgame at 2-2. If Nunez is ruled out for the series, the Red Sox will replace him with outfielder Chris Young, according to Farrell.

It started early, with Boston DH Eduardo Nunez re-injuring his right knee on the second out of the inning. The Astros get a man on first but can't capitalize either.

The Red Sox don't have to set their postseason roster until late Wednesday, so we'll use this projected roster from CBS Boston as our guide.

The Astros are looking for him to build on the work he's done since arriving in Houston just more than a month ago.

Astros right-hander Justin Verlander (1-0) labored following a quick start, coughing up a 2-0 lead before rallying to a strong finish.

So, there you have it, my thoughts on what the Red Sox ALDS rotation will look like for the rest of the series after games 1 and 2. "So for us, matching up we made a decision to go 1 Verlander, 2 Keuchel, which leaves open the option at the back end to do whatever we want if it ends up being a Game 5". The game can be watched on TV on the MLB Network, or online through live stream (details below).

You can catch the Red Sox and Astros kickoff the pivotal American League series at 4:08 p.m.