If not for Andrew Benintendi's incredible catch to win the game, this series might have played out very differently.
Of all the surprises this postseason, nothing shocked more people than Price's outing in Game 5 on short rest on the road. It was also a year that had its share of controversies from the trade for closer Roberto Osuna to "sign gate" in the playoffs to the controversial calls over the last two games, calls that may have cost the Astros the series.
Price was warming in the bullpen as Game 4 ended, perhaps jeopardizing his readiness for Thursday.
And that, as it turns out, was a flawless description of Bregman, the face of the Astros this fall, in the stunned and sullen aftermath of their Game 5 loss to the Red Sox at Minute Maid Park on Thursday night, the one that sent them packing for the season and sent the Red Sox to the World Series: still brash, still cocky, still unable to fathom the end of the Astros' hopes of defending their 2017 title. If you know his history against the Astros, you're not all that surprised.
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But before leaving Minute Maid Park, the Red Sox surrounded the 43-year-old Cora in the clubhouse and heartily sang "happy birthday!" Houston was shut out five times in Verlander's starts on its home field in 2018. The 35-year-old entered the day 4-0 with a 1.15 ERA over his last four postseason starts in which his team faced elimination. However, Boston scored eight runs in Games 3 and 4 and another four while Verlander was on the mound in Game 5, so it could very well be in their heads. He pitched in each of the first four games against Houston and dominated with a.188 batting average allowed and zero runs in 4.2 innings.
The Astros open as a slight favorite to win the series (-115) and took care of Cleveland in the ALDS. It's his fault for giving up four runs in this game. Martinez and Verlander were teammates back when they both played for the Detroit Tigers.
"I felt good. I think it kind of just all boils down to having a game plan and obviously executing", Bradley told reporters after the game. This is nearly always true. But despite their "inferior" regular season record, Houston remains the World Series favorite and is an absolute buzzsaw right now.
After the terrible call in game four that robbed Altuve and the Astros of a two-run home run, fans didn't take any chances in game five.
The Red Sox dugout erupted with high fives and cheers as Devers rounded the bases while most of the stadium barring a sprinkling of Red Sox fans sat in stunned silence.