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Prior to Tuesday night’s Game 1, this year’s World Series matchup between the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers appeared to be an intriguing one. Two games later, it’s looking like a runaway as the series shifts to Hollywood.
The Red Sox now have a 2-0 lead after holding serve at Fenway Park. As one can imagine, the statistics about teams climbing out of such a deficit in the Fall Classic doesn’t look promising.
Mookie Betts‘ dance moves don’t take away the reality of the situation for Los Angeles, unfortunately. Even if we take a look at 2-0 series leads in all best-of-7 postseason matchups, the numbers get worse…or better, if you’re the Red Sox.
One of the few things manager Dave Roberts and his club can hold their hat on is the last team to climb out of this hole and actually win the World Series. Coincidentally enough, it was the Dodgers.
That happened a long time ago, but it’s better than nothing, right? The Dodgers can also be encouraged by how the situation is going to change starting in Game 3.
First off, they’re going to be playing at Chavez Ravine, which is obviously more comfortable and familiar than Fenway Park for them. The weather will be warmer, which is another plus, but the composition of the lineups will also be much different.
The Red Sox threw southpaws Chris Sale and David Price at LA as the starters in Game 1 and 2. Manager Alex Cora will send right-hander Rick Porcello to the bump Friday night, which is a much better matchup for Roberts’ club.
Facing a right-hander means Roberts will likely be penciling in Max Muncy, Cody Bellinger, Joc Pederson, and Yasmani Grandal into his starting lineup — something he hasn’t done yet in this year’s Fall Classic. And for a team that depends heavily on the long ball, it’d be helpful to have the four players who finished the regular season with the most homers hit in a Dodger uniform.
LA will also be sending rookie Walker Buehler to the mound after having Clayton Kershaw and Hyun-Jin Ryu (both lefties), start the first two contests. What Buehler lacks in big-league experience, he makes up for in velocity. His 96.2 mph average fastball velocity ranked fifth in baseball among starters with at least 130 regular-season innings.
Have the Dodgers put themselves in a corner? Yes. With the Red Sox currently rolling, does it look unlikely that they’ll recover? Right now, yes. If they are going to get out of this hole, though, this is their best shot.
About Matt Musico
Matt Musico currently manages Chin Music Baseball and contributes to The Sports Daily. His past work has been featured at numberFire, Yahoo! Sports and Bleacher Report. He’s also written a book about how to become a sports blogger. You can sign up for his email newsletter here.