Sports

3 takeaways from ALDS Game 4

3 takeaways from ALDS Game 4

There was no debating the better team all year, and there was no debating the better team in this series.

Having to wait for a challenge to be decided before celebrating isn't the most exciting way to wrap up a series but the Red Sox and their fans, who had their hearts in their throats as the ninth inning intensified, will definitely take it.

NY faced a win-or-go-home predicament in that 1978 clash between these storied rivals, and did so again Tuesday night.

On Wednesday night, after hanging on to beat NY 4-3 following a replay review of the final out, the Red Sox headed for the away clubhouse and did as every baseball team does in the postseason: they popped large bottles of champagne.

Game 4 is Tuesday, and the Red Sox are one win away from meeting the Houston Astros in the American League Championship Series.

Despite the minor blip in the radar, Severino will look to build off his solid, yet shortened Wild Card start - when he tossed four innings of shutout ball while striking out seven and allowing two hits. By the time the inning was over, the Red Sox had a 3-0 lead they never relinquished.

After hitting a record 267 home runs this season, the Yankees failed to hit any in Games 3 and 4, thus dropping their record to 10-23 this year, regular and post-season combined, when going homerless. In the third inning, which began with the Yankees down by a run, the first four batters went single, single, sacrifice fly, single - at which point the Yankees still didn't have anyone warming up in the bullpen. And the Red Sox plated 12 runs off them in 17 innings this series.

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Alex Cora managed circles around Aaron Boone, whose head might not stop spinning until spring training.

The Yankees offense spent much of the series half-asleep at the plate, but no one drew more focus than Stanton, who was invisible again in Tuesday's series- and season-ending loss.

Rick Porcello (1-0) and three relievers preceded Kimbrel's high-wire act. The Red Sox were making hard contact against him, and making it look easy.

Sale came out throwing in the mid-90s.

Porcello also had one pitch called a ball that had a better than 50 percent chance of being called a strike - and that was a 1-2 pitch to Aaron Hicks with two outs in the fifth inning (70.5 percent). Honorable mention goes to catcher Christian Vazquez, who probably had at least two near-death experiences while keeping Kimbrel's haywire sliders in front of him in the ninth. He tossed a 1-2-3 inning, then gave way to Ryan Brasier for the seventh.

Matt Barnes got two groundouts in a scoreless sixth, Ryan Brasier pitched a ideal seventh and Chris Sale ended a scoreless eighth by striking out Hicks.


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