Much of the Red Sox' success this postseason has to do with their uncanny ability to produce at the plate with two outs.
In Game 2 of the World Series, it was J.D. Martinez coming through with a two-out, two-run single in the fifth inning to break the tie and ultimately give the Red Sox a 4-2 victory. The rally had started with two outs and nobody on, but then Christian Vazquez singled on a 0-2 count, Mookie Betts singled, and then both Andrew Benintendi and Steve Pearce walked to set the stage for Martinez.
Ian Kinsler's RBI single in the second inning came with two outs as well.
It's more than just a trend. It's a trait that this Red Sox team has carried with them throughout the season. Resilience.
Martinez talked about the Sox' relentless fifth inning after the game.
"Huge. That was a great example of how you grind out an inning, grind out at-bats," Martinez said. "It's something we preach about and we were talking about it after that inning. We were like 'Dude, that was such a perfect example of grinding at-bats out, finding ways to get guys on and just keeping the line moving.' "
Benintendi, who had four hits in Game 1, said it's simply a matter of trying to make it as tough on the opposing pitcher as they can.
"I think we just lock it in and try to be a tough out," Benintendi said. "These are good pitchers we're facing, and a lot of them we haven't faced yet, especially in this series. Just trying to put together good at-bats and try to make the at-bat as difficult as possible."
As for Steve Pearce, Boston's midseason acquisition has fit right in with the Red Sox' brand of scrappy offense.
"What this team brings, it's contagious," Pearce said. You see guys grinding out at-bats and we keep passing it to the next guy, and you see the defense start to get worried a little bit. That's Boston Red Sox baseball."
Manager Alex Cora stressed after the game the importance of putting the ball in play rather than relying on the long ball.
"Putting the ball in play in those situations is very important," Cora said. "I said it a few days ago, and I'll say it again we live in an era that .210 with 30 home runs and 70 RBIs is acceptable, it's a good season, and we don't believe that. There's certain situations that a strikeout is not just an out. And we put them in play, and they did again tonight, and that's why we won the game."
The Red Sox have driven in 34 runs with two outs so far this postseason. Which team has the most two-out postseason RBIs ever, you ask? That would be the team that threw out the ceremonial first pitch before Game 2 with 45.
We got a lot of requests for this, here's the most 2-out RBIs by a team in one postseason— Baseball Reference (@baseball_ref) October 25, 2018
After tonight, the #RedSox are up to 34, tied for 6th most in one postseason pic.twitter.com/0iPEGB0Ei7
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