The narrative that David Price can’t pitch in October is dead and gone.
Following his breakthrough in the ALCS vs. the Houston Astros, the lefthander shined yet again for the Red Sox in a 4-2 win in Game 2 of the World Series over the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Boston is bound for the west coast with a 2-0 series lead.
"I just tried to keep it the same," Price said. "Same as in Houston, the same as in every other game. Don't put any added pressure or anything of that nature. Just go out there and throw strikes and execute pitches and rely on my defense, and that's what we were able to do."
Price gave the Red Sox six innings of work on Wednesday night at Fenway Park, giving up two runs on three hits, walking three and striking out five on 88 pitches. His only blemishes came in the top of the fourth inning, when the Dodgers were able to load up the bases with nobody out.
Price minimized the damage, allowing only David Freese to score on a sac fly off the bat of Matt Kemp and Manny Machado to follow suit on a Yasiel Puig single.
Still, Los Angeles had turned a one-run deficit into a one-run lead.
And Dodgers starter Hyun-Jin Ryu had settled in nicely after Ian Kinsler’s single scored Xander Bogaerts in the second inning. He had retired eight Red Sox batters in a row before No. 9 hitter Christian Vazquez stepped to the plate in the bottom of the fifth.
Like they have all postseason long, Boston made its opponent pay dearly for failing to record that third out in a timely fashion.
Mookie Betts singled and Andrew Benintendi walked after a lengthy at-bat to load the bases for Steve Pearce, who tied the game with a walk that forced in Vazquez.
J.D. Martinez was next to the dish for Boston, delivering the big blow with a two-run single that put the Red Sox ahead for the duration.
Of the 68 runs the Red Sox have scored in the postseason, 36 of them have come with two outs. Dating back to Game 1, nine out of 12 in the World Series have come with two down.
"It has to be tough," Boston manager Alex Cora said of giving up so many two out runs. "One thing in the playoffs, and we talked about it before we started, get the leadoff guy out, don't give up two-out hits or runners. And we've been doing that to the opposition."
Joe Kelly relieved Price and worked a perfect seventh inning, Nathan Eovaldi a perfect eighth and Craig Kimbrell a spotless ninth to preserve the victory.
His spot on the postseason roster tenuous at one point, Kelly is in the midst of perhaps his finest stretch in a Red Sox uniform. In 7 1/3 innings pitched in the playoffs, Kelly has given up just one earned run -- good enough for a cool 1.23 earned run average.
Puig's RBI single was the last base hit for the Dodgers.
Betts finished 3 for 4 for Boston out of the leadoff spot, including his first extra base hit of the series. It was also the first three-hit game of the postseason for Betts, widely considered the frontrunner for the American League Most Valuable Player award.
Teams that take a 2-0 lead in the World Series have gone on to win in 43 of the 54 instances it’s happened throughout history. This includes both Red Sox teams in 2004 and 2007, who went on to sweep the St. Louis Cardinals and Colorado Rockies, respectively.
The teams are off tomorrow night before Game 3 on Friday night at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. First pitch is at 8:09 p.m. Eastern time.