The Boston Red Sox’s backs are against the wall in the 2021 ALCS.
After taking a 2-1 lead over the Houston Astros in the first three games of the series, the Red Sox have dropped two straight contests and are now facing elimination.
In order for Boston to extend its season, it’s going to need to pull out a victory on the road in Game 6.
For that to happen, the team is going to need to do a few key things.
3. Get A Strong Showing From The Bullpen
Admittedly, this is far from a small thing. But if the Red Sox want to extend their season, they’re going to need the bullpen to step up.
Boston’s relief staff had nightmare showings in Games 4 and 5 of the series, and that can’t continue.
In Game 4, five Red Sox relievers combined to allow eight runs over four innings of work.
Then, in Game 5, five Red Sox relievers combined to allow five runs over 3.2 frames.
Ryan Brasier and Perez (again) had especially bad performances.
Needless to say, it’s hard to win games when your bullpen isn’t holding up.
Boston’s relievers need to flip a switch.
2. Don’t Lose The Faith
Mindset is very important when a team is attempting to overcome a deficit.
The Red Sox battled through a ton of adversity in the regular season, and they’ve already faced elimination once (and survived) in the 2021 playoffs.
Now, they’re facing elimination for a second time.
It’s not unfamiliar territory for the club, but it’s never a great place to be.
The players in Boston’s locker room need to rally around each other and embrace the underdog situation that they’re in.
Red Sox in 7. pic.twitter.com/PXIjmzcq4N
— Jordan Moore (@iJordanMoore) October 21, 2021
Optimism and positivity are key.
1. Deliver With Runners In Scoring Position
Situational hitting was a massive problem for the Red Sox in Games 4 and 5.
The team has failed to deliver lately with runners in scoring position.
In Game 4, the Sox went 0-for-9 with RISP, and in Game 5, they went 0-for-4.
Moreover, Boston has scored just three runs in the past two games.
That’s obviously not a very good formula for success.
The Red Sox had an elite offense in the regular season, averaging the fourth-most runs per game in all of baseball, but lately, the bats have been quiet.
The Red Sox are 0-13 with RISP in the last two games.
They were 6-17 in games 2 and 3.
— Elliot (@Benson_Elliot) October 20, 2021
The club is going to have a very hard time staying alive in this series if it can’t put runs on the board.
It has been a wild 2021 season for the Red Sox.
The team wasn’t expected to get this far, but the outside noise never seemed to matter to Boston.
But now, it’s do-or-die time.
The club needs to win two straight games on the road in order to stay alive.
It’s a tall task, but if Boston does some of the key things we just talked about, it’s certainly wouldn’t be impossible for the Red Sox to win Game 6 and force a decisive Game 7.