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After Sale and Pomeranz, the Red Sox don't have a starting pitcher who can threaten the Astros in the playoffs.

If the Astros win: They sweep the Red Sox for their first series win since advancing to the World Series in 2005.

"We have got to do a little bit more consistent job", he said. "So we fully respect and understood the opponent, and they're playing like that".

He might be the only one left who believes it. The Astros grabbed a 1-0 series lead by socking four home runs overall while getting two-run base hits from Marwin Gonzalez and Brian McCann. But it isn't working, and there's not much to say.

"Any mistake that we've made these past two games, they've made us pay for them", Pomeranz said. "We haven't played well yet, so we have to get back home and figure it out".

If you're here in Manchester and watching or listening to today's game, but haven't been following the Red Sox this season, here are a few things to watch for.

The AL Central champion Astros finished the season with a record of 101-61, one game behind the Cleveland Indians for the best record in the AL. Meanwhile, the Red Sox couldn't get anything started off Astros starter Justin Verlander.

"They're very good, they're deep, and they have got a number of ways to beat you".

"I know what I can do. We did it as a team". Boston was holding a two-game lead in the division over the New York Yankees, and was at risk of playing a potential game 163 if they were to lose both this game and the next and their rivals won theirs. That's not how big time players should play in October. When Boston tried the gambit two innings later, this time with Addison Reed on the mound, Correa pounced. The Red Sox instead tried their luck with the All-Star batting cleanup, intentionally walking Altuve twice to face Correa at critical junctures.

The left-hander had trouble settling in early and after needing 30 pitches to get through the second inning, it looked like this start might be a short one. Their Red Sox's cleanup man, Betts, gamely presses on with a wrist that recently needed a cortisone shot. Four earned runs later, and he was out of the ballgame.

And bullpen sessions in front of special assistant Pedro Martinez, pitching development analyst Dave Bush and whoever else the Red Sox can find to provide a fresh set of eyes. But when Sale was presented with the idea earlier in the week, he said, "Three days' rest?"

So where do they stand now?

Currently, there are still a lot of tickets available for Game 4 on Monday (Oct. 9) as well.

Red Sox 1. Bogaerts SS 2.

Nunez missed 19 of Boston's last 20 regular-season games with what the team called a sore knee. But their hitters can not keep up with the Astros, and their pitchers can not stop them.

Many fans held signs saying that Altuve should be this season's MVP and one behind home plate proclaimed in sparkly multi-colored letters: "Altuve, He's Pretty Good". "There's no holes in our lineup".

What's most deflating for anyone hoping for something - anything - from this Red Sox team is that it appears to be a carbon copy of last year's postseason flameout.