BOSTON — The Red Sox sent a 26-man lineup for Tuesday night’s American League Wild Card Game that does not consist of J.D. Martinez. The star slugger is down with a sprained left ankle sustained when he tripped over 2nd base while going out to play defense in Sunday’s regular-season ending.
However, Boston does have crucial lefty reducer Josh Taylor — who was out with a low back injury — on the lineup. The Red Sox have actually currently dealt with the Yankees 19 times this season, winning 10 of the matches, so there are couple of tricks in between the competitors heading into the winner-take-all video game.
Here is the lineup that Boston believes will have the very best possibility at overthrowing New York and making a journey to the Division Series versus the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday.
Kevin Plawecki, C: Though Plawecki is technically the backup catcher, he will begin the AL Wild Card Game due to how well he’s coupled with starter Nathan Eovaldi this season. Plawecki is a strong game-caller, however he has a below-average arm.
Christian Vázquez, C: Don’t be shocked to see Vázquez come off the bench in this video game, particularly after Eovaldi comes out. Vázquez tends to increase to the celebration in huge areas at the plate, and he is a much better pure protector and thrower than Plawecki.
Connor Wong, C: Why not bring a 3rd catcher to provide supervisor Alex Cora as much versatility as possible when it pertains to late-game blending and matching? Wong, among the gamers gotten from the Dodgers in the Mookie Betts trade, played in 6 video games for the Red Sox this season, going 6-for-13.
Kyle Schwarber, DH: There’s no overemphasizing how Schwarber’s unrelenting and disciplined method at the plate has actually affected the Red Sox given that he was gotten at the Trade Deadline. He is a winner, and he’s got an excellent postseason resume, to boot (.288 average, .981 OPS in 24 video games).
Bobby Dalbec, 1B: With J.D. Martinez not available, Dalbec is most likely to get the start versus Yankees ace Gerrit Cole. The novice developed into a strong gamer for the Red Sox from August on, and he has as much raw power as anybody on the group.
Christian Arroyo, 2B: Due to the time he missed out on with COVID-19, an irritating left hamstring and the strong play by José Iglesias, Arroyo was utilized moderately down the stretch. However, Iglesias isn’t qualified for the postseason due to the fact that he signed up with the company after the Sept. 1 due date. This puts Arroyo back into the spotlight. He is a strong protector and a good player.
Xander Bogaerts, SS: Boston’s group leader, Bogaerts was a far much better gamer prior to the All-Star break than he sought it. But who’s to state Bogaerts can’t get on a roll in October? Bogaerts kept an eye out of sorts the last 9 video games of the season, when he went 5-for-32 without an extra-base hit.
Rafael Devers, 3B: It’s tough to think the left-handed-hitting slugger is just 24. He is currently battle-tested in the postseason, developing success for the Sox in 2017 and ’18. Devers is the most harmful player on the group. He brought the Sox to their area in the postseason with a beast last video game of the season.
Alex Verdugo, OF: The intense Verdugo can play all over the outfield however left is quickly his finest position. Verdugo is a pesky player who has had his share of essential knocks this season. Given the enthusiasm Verdugo has fun with, he might well increase to the minute in his very first experience with huge video games in October. Sometimes, Verdugo has psychological lapses on the bases.
Kiké Hernández, CF/2B: The Red Sox are at their finest offensively when Hernández, who belted 20 homers this season, is setting the table from the leadoff area. Hernández was red-hot from late June to late August, however he had a difficult time getting his groove back after returning from the COVID-19 hurt list.
Hunter Renfroe, RF/CF: After being non-tendered by the Rays, Renfroe was rapidly scooped up by the Red Sox. At the modest rate of $3 million, he ended up being among the very best pickups of the season. Renfroe mashed 31 homers and utilized his cannon of an arm to make lots of baserunners sorry for operating on him. If there is a knock on Renfroe, it’s that he is too aggressive on defense often, which results in missing out on the cutoff male or tossing to the incorrect base.
Jarren Duran, OF/PR: Duran is the fastest gamer in the company, which is why the Red Sox desire him on the lineup in this video game. Duran didn’t adapt to Major League pitching as rapidly as he had actually hoped this season.
Travis Shaw, Pinch-player: Shaw verified Boston’s choice to re-acquire him with some success late in video games, especially the walk-off grand slam versus the Rangers on Aug. 23. Look for him to pinch-hit at some time in the AL Wild Card Game.
Jonathan Araúz, Utility: Araúz can play 2nd, brief and 3rd, so he is on the lineup for insurance coverage functions. Though he didn’t have much of a year offensively, the switch-hitting Araúz created a number of huge homers late in video games down the stretch.
Nathan Eovaldi, SP: The flame-throwing righty showed his playoff nerve in 2018 when he had a 1.61 PERIOD in 6 video games. He has actually been the very best beginning pitcher on the Red Sox this season and has a varied pitch mix.
Nick Pivetta, RHP: Given that Cora utilized Pivetta, a beginning pitcher, as his more detailed in the important Game No. 162, it wouldn’t be unexpected to see the gifted righty get some high-leverage action in the AL Wild Card Game.
Garrett Whitlock, RHP: The novice Rule 5 choice has actually been Boston’s finest reducer all season, and he will be utilized to get important outs anywhere from the middle to late part of the video game. Whitlock was sidelined late in the season with an ideal pectoral stress, however he looked strong in pitching a scoreless inning in the last video game of the season.
Tanner Houck, RHP: The gifted and effective righty was last seen shooting 5 best innings on Saturday versus the Nationals. He required simply 53 pitches to do so, making him an alternative on 2 days off.
Hansel Robles, RHP: Robles was an afterthought when he was gotten at the Trade Deadline. However, he developed into a vital pitcher for Cora down the stretch and was unscored on in his last 15 looks of the season.
Ryan Brasier, RHP: A crucial consider Boston’s fantastic October run of ’18, Brasier had actually ended up being a forgotten male till just recently, when he kipped down 8 successive scoreless innings to liquidate the season.
Eduardo Rodriguez, LHP: The veteran lefty starter got 3 big outs in relief on one day of rest in the last video game of the season. Cora will have no doubt bringing him into a huge area.
Garrett Richards, RHP: The slender righty was benched from the beginning rotation in August and was dominant for a prolonged stretch when he was transformed to the bullpen. However, Richards did not end up strong, getting scored on in 4 of his last 5 trips. **
Adam Ottavino, RHP: The previous Yankee was a strong entertainer for the Red Sox from Opening Day through Sept. 3, when he had a 3.35 PERIOD, a .222 challengers’ average and hadn’t quit a homer in 58 looks. After that? Not so excellent. Ottavino quit 5 homers in his last 11 trips, notching a 9.72 PERIOD over that period.
Matt Barnes, RHP: What an enigma. Barnes was the very best reducer on the Red Sox in the very first half of the season, making the All-Star group. He wasn’t the very same person after that, especially in August, when he had a 3.50 PERIOD and lost the more detailed’s task. He does have big-game experience.
Austin Davis, LHP: The July trade acquisition is more of a timeless left-on-left person, which isn’t as important in this age of the three-batter-minimum guideline. However, Davis might can be found in helpful versus Anthony Rizzo.
Josh Taylor, LHP: It was welcome news for the Red Sox to get Taylor back. Their crucial lefty reducer hadn’t pitched given that Sept. 22 due to a low back stress. Taylor held lefties to a .146 typical and .381 OPS this season.