MLB Postseason: Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians ALDS Game 1 lineups
Here are the starting lineups for the Boston Red Sox and Cleveland Indians in Game 1 of the ALDS at Progressive Field tonight.
The Boston Red Sox begin their postseason journey Thursday night in Cleveland for Game 1 of the American League Division Series against the Indians.
Cy Young candidate Rick Porcello takes the mound for the Red Sox, while Cleveland’s injury ravaged pitching staff turns to Trevor Bauer to begin the series.
The Red Sox lineup is pretty much what you would expect, with the lone exception being Brock Holt will be batting second, pushing Xander Bogaerts down to the sixth spot. This order is something manager John Farrell experimented with briefly down the stretch for a couple of reasons.
Primarily the switch was made to alleviate pressure on Bogaerts, who struggled down the stretch. Not that Holt was exactly lighting it up in September either, but for the Red Sox to be successful they need to find a way to spark Bogaerts’ bat.
The lineup shuffle also allows the top half of the order to alternate between right-handed and lefty batters, making it more difficult for Indians manager Terry Francona to mange his bullpen against this part of the order.
Many may wonder why young phenom Andrew Benintendi isn’t being used in the No. 2 hole if a lefty was preferred in that spot, but Farrell explained that he didn’t want to force too much pressure on the rookie, who has done a solid job in the spot he’s in. Why mess with what’s working for the kid? Farrell also pointed to Holt’s decision making as a factor, crediting his ability to work deep into counts against right-handed pitching.
Here’s the lineup that Cleveland will roll out against Porcello tonight.
You’ll notice a couple of old friends in the middle of the Indians lineup. Mike Napoli, a member of the 2013 World Series team, bats in the cleanup spot, while Coco Crisp, who was here for the 2007 championship, will hit seventh.
The Red Sox have the leagues best offense, but Cleveland was a close second when playing at home. Which lineup will come out on top in Game 1? Tune in tonight to find out!
Next: Red Sox: 5 keys to winning ALDS
Also, don’t forget to follow @BoSoxInjection on Twitter for updates, analysis and opinions throughout the game. Join the conversation and help us root on the Red Sox!