The Boston Red Sox lived and died with starting pitching during the 2023 season.

When starters such as Brayan Bello and James Paxton went deep into games with competitive outings during the summer, the Red Sox went 15-8 in July for their best month of the season. When starters could not finish five innings and crumbled in the final two months of the season, the Red Sox fell out of contention after being as close as 1 1/2 games out of a wild-card spot.

Boston has a solid lineup and an elite group of late-game relievers ready to roll for 2024. In order to compete and potentially return to the postseason, the Red Sox absolutely have to bolster the starting rotation.

This postseason, the Texas Rangers have dominated their competition with a 6-0 start to the postseason and a 2-0 lead to begin the American League Championship Series. Texas constructed a booming lineup for this run, but the team’s starting rotation has stood out in October.

Story continues below advertisement

Particularly in the ALCS, the starting pitching has paced two more wins for the Rangers. In Game 1, Jordan Montgomery continued his strong postseason with 6 1/3 shutout innings with five strikeouts as part of a 2-0 victory. After being traded from the Yankees and Cardinals in the last year, the lefty has been outstanding.

No Matchup Found

Click here to enter a different Sportradar ID.

    What do you think?  Leave a comment.

Nathan Eovaldi took the baton and kept things rolling in Game 2 on Monday. Despite allowing three runs, the right-hander battled through six innings, including an escape from a bases-loaded, no-out jam.

That was not the first time the 33-year-old pulled off this feat against the Astros in the ALCS, doing so with the Red Sox as well in 2021.

Story continues below advertisement

After parts of five seasons in Boston, Eovaldi signed with Texas last winter and now writes another brilliant chapter of his postseason story after posting a 3.14 playoff ERA with the Red Sox.

Texas is benefiting from quality starting pitching all without its top offseason signing Jacob deGrom, who underwent Tommy John surgery in June. The Rangers do get their top trade deadline addition back in Max Scherzer, who will start Game 3 after missing the end of the season with a muscle injury.

Story continues below advertisement

The Rangers constructed a group of capable starting pitchers who consistently give their team a chance to win while going deep into games. They did so with key trades and a willingness to invest money into the rotation.

Texas now sits two wins from going to the World Series for the first time since 2011. For the Red Sox this winter, it’s time for them to make similar improvements to the starting rotations.

Featured image via Troy Taormina/USA TODAY Sports Images