In the second game of a day/night double header after losing to the Yankees earlier in the day 3-0, the Red Sox were able to turn around and win against New York 3-0. The win against the Yankees is not what stands out however, its how they won.
David Price started the game for the Red Sox and looked FANTASTIC! He pitched 8 shutout innings striking out 8 Yankees while walking none and allowing only seven hits.
Despite the great numbers Price put up, we cannot ignore the obvious. Without a doubt in my mind: This was the best Price has looked in a Red Sox uniform and frankly… it isn’t all that close.
Through the first six innings of the game Price was otherworldly; he was burying his fastball inside on right handed hitters time and time again forcing the issue. This is unlike the David Price we’ve grown accustomed to who is obsessed with nibbling on the corners trying to throw that backdoor cutter.
This Price was attacking and resembling his rotation mate Chris Sale, but that’s not what caught the eyes of the fans. It was the mentality that Price displayed on the mound. He was pitching confidently and even if the Yankees were sitting on his pitches they couldn’t do anything with it.
This has been a trend with Price lately. His ERA has dropped in five straight starts and is currently sitting at 3.39. Price owns a 5-2 record on the season and has struck out 66 batters in the 69 innings he has pitched. These are all positive trends but none more than this stat, this is the most fastballs Price has thrown (percentage based) since 2011.
So, what does this all mean for the Price and the Sox all together? Well, its pretty simple.
If Price can pitch the way he has pitched in his last five starts, then the Red Sox are not only going to win the A.L East but they will run away with it. They will also be much more capable of winning antoher title. Price is the secret to the Red Sox reaching their full potential as a team. Sale has been fantastic but the question has been all year what about the games Sale does not pitch. Now Price is stepping up showing us why he got $30 million dollars a year.
The reason behind the sudden turnaround of Price could be credited to multiple things. His beef with Boston Sports media and the constant doubt (well deserved by the way) about him living up to this contract. Maybe it’s Chris Sale pushing him to be better and even relieving some of the pressure especially since Price has never handled pressure well throughout his career and his playoff record backs that up.
Whatever it is, Red Sox nation should hope it keeps driving him because he looks intimidating on the mound instead of intimidated now. If Price is able to keep this up along with the great pitching of Sale and the level of defense we know the Red Sox are capable of playing at, they can win the tight 2-1 ball games which will definitely help them once October rolls around.