The 2 Grand Slams of the Red Sox lead to the victory of ALCS against Astros



HOUSTON >> JD Martinez and Rafael Devers helped the Red Sox have a great old time in Houston.

Boston became the first team to hit two Grand Slams in a post-season game, with Martinez and Devers meeting in the first two innings of a 9-5 win against the Astros today, who combined their AL Championship Series with one game apiece .

Game 3 is Monday night in Boston. It’s the first of three home games in a row for the Red Sox, who are back in the playoffs for the first time since winning the 2018 World Series after beating Houston at the ALCS.

Martinez made it 4-0 when he fought off rookie Luis García with two outs in the first. It was the first career playoff slam for the four-time all-star who started his career with the Astros.

“This situation, the pressure is on him, it’s not up to me to get through it,” said Martinez. “It’s the first inning. He loaded bases. I try to convince myself that, try to stay relaxed and just look for a place so that I can just put a barrel on it. “

García left with discomfort in his right knee after running the first stroke of the second inning. Jake Odorizzi took over, and shortly after a 13-minute delay while the right-hander warmed up on the field, Devers hit with an out for slam # 2.

“JD’s momentum was enormous to get us on board early, and then Raffy, the same one, another grandma,” said ardent teammate Kiké Hernández. “Has that happened before?”

It has now.

Hernández, whom Boston manager Alex Cora referred to as “en fuego” Friday night after a two-homer performance in Game 1, stayed on fire today. He had two hits that were highlighted by a solo homer in the fourth inning.

Hernández was the hottest hitter of the postseason, leading all players with 16 hits, five homers and four doubles. His nine extra base hits are also the most in these playoffs, setting a Red Sox postseason record with Mike Lowell (2007), Kevin Youkilis (2007) and David Ortiz (2004 & 2007). His five homers are also the most in team history with Ortiz (2004, 2013) and Todd Walker (2003).

“The importance of the game allows me to stay focused and locked in,” said Hernández.

Red Sox starter Nathan Eovaldi allowed five hits and three runs in 5 1/3 innings.

The Astros won a 5-4 win in the series opener as they rallied behind Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa’s homers before falling into that huge hole early on.

“This is a tough team,” said Cora. “They are never comfortable because they are one step away from getting back into the game.”

The Red Sox were up 9-0 when Houston hit the board with an RBI double from Kyle Tucker with two outs in fourth. The Astros cut the lead to 9-3 when Yuli Gurriel single-field followed to right-field, which scored two more points.

Gurriel and Jason Castro added solo homers in ninth ahead of Darwinzon Hernandez before Ryan Brasier won the final.

“In the end it was a bit too tight for comfort, but we made it,” said Hernández.

Manager Dusty Baker isn’t sure how long García will be out, but he said he’d looked into the matter “from time to time” but didn’t tell anyone about it.

“It didn’t bother him enough not to throw,” said Baker. “We’ll make a decision in a few days.”

Garcia’s injury is another blow to a Houston team trying to reach the World Series for the second time in three years. The Astros are already stumbling after an injury to staff ace Lance McCullers Jr. that kept him off the list for this series.

They won the championship in 2017, a crown spoiled by the team’s shield theft scandal.

When McCullers ran out, Baker said the team just had to “hit more” to absorb the loss. But now that the rotation has continued to run out, it becomes an even bigger task for this strong line-up defeating a Boston team whose offensive has overtaken everyone this postseason.

What is he now asking of his offense?

“Do something else,” he said with a giggle and shook his head. “You don’t have much choice, so we just have to do more. That’s all.”

Odorizzi was struck off the Division Series roster after a disappointing first season in Houston, before earning a spot that round after injuring McCullers. He allowed seven hits and four runs in four innings today, an effort that is certainly not good news for a team that is running low on starters.


Altuve and Michael Brantley, the top two hitters in Houston’s lineup, are a combo 2 for 17 in the series with one hit each, including Altuve’s Homer in Game 1.


Odorizzi was surprised when he was pushed into the game and hadn’t even stretched when called to the hill.

“I’m sure it felt like forever for all of you, but for me it was the quickest thing I could warm up,” he said. “It usually takes me more than 30 minutes.”

Cora was asked if the long delay was affecting his team’s concentration.

“It really didn’t matter if it was an hour late or whatever,” Cora said. “We were locked up”


There is a day off on Sunday before José Urquidy of Houston makes his first start in Game 3 on Monday of this postseason. The Red Sox have yet to name their starter but should have starters Nick Pivetta and Eduardo Rodriguez available after neither were needed in the first two games.


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