BOSTON — There’s a small consolation price for David Price if the Rays fail to advance beyond the ALDS.
Price enjoys watching the Red Sox.
“The Red Sox are probably one of my favorite teams to watch play, to be honest, just because of the fire that they have,” Price said Friday. “And you can have a ton of fire but it’s a little bit more, and you can tell. You can tell those players care about each other. And I think that’s what both of our teams have.”
Price probably didn’t have much fun watching the Red Sox play Friday, as Boston racked up 14 hits while pounding Tampa Bay 12-2 in Game 1 of the ALDS. The left-hander will have a chance to get his Rays going in the right direction Saturday, though, as he’ll go up against John Lackey in Game 2.
Price understands that evening up the series against a relentless Red Sox club isn’t going to be easy. In fact, it’s going to be downright difficult despite Price’s success against the Red Sox this season. Price shut down the Red Sox at Fenway Park in back-to-back starts in July, but October baseball is a different beast.
“It’s just pitching against the Red Sox or pitching against a team like the Yankees, you know the history behind those franchises. You know what they’re capable of doing,” Price said Friday. “Every single year — year in, year out — they’re going to be a postseason team, and you know you’re going to have to come with your best. If you come with your “B” game, “B‑plus” game, you have a pretty good chance to lose. So it heightens your awareness. You start feeling butterflies probably a day earlier than what you normally would. Pitching in this ballpark, pitching against that team it makes you want it just a little bit more.”
Price, who posted a 2.48 ERA and 0.67 WHIP in five starts against the Red Sox this season, went the distance in the Rays’ one-game tiebreaker in Texas on Monday. He’ll need to elevate his game again Saturday to ensure that the Rays don’t head back to Tampa Bay down 2-0 in their best-of-five ALDS series.