Boston Red Sox

Oct 26, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Max Muncy (13) hits a solo home run against the Boston Red Sox in the eighteenth inning in game three of the 2018 World Series at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com

What. A. Game.

Game 3 of the 2018 World Series had everything you can ask for. Big-time pitching performances. Clutch home runs. Plays at the plate. A handful of bizarre moments. And all kinds of tension. Perhaps it could’ve ended slightly earlier, but anyone who stayed up for this marathon certainly had a night they won’t soon forget.

What the Red Sox do with their pitching and lineup in Game 4 is anyone’s guess. But anyway, here are some quick-hit thoughts on a game that was anything but quick.

Poor Nathan Eovaldi. An absolute warrior performance for the righty, who threw 97 pitches despite not entering the game until the 12th inning. He cruised along for six innings, but couldn’t quite get through a seventh. It’s hard to get on Eovaldi for that performance, as a walkoff that late into the night is almost like a mercy killing.

Big bats go silent. It was an unacceptably quiet night for the heart of the Red Sox order. Top-4 starters Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts, Mitch Moreland, and J.D. Martinez combined to go 0-for-23 with nine strikeouts. That could mainly be due to the fact that Buehler was just unconscious, but the Dodgers’ parade of relievers really came through too. Either way, the Red Sox will need plenty more out of their top bats if they want to close out this series in Los Angeles.

A night to forget for Ian Kinsler. The second baseman hobbled around the bases after pinch-running for J.D. Martinez, ultimately getting thrown out at the plate by Cody Bellinger. It only got worse from there, as Kinsler’s wild throw with two outs in the 13th inning allowed the Dodgers to tie the game. The Red Sox were that close to making the series 3-0, but Kinsler’s blunder made the game go another couple of hours.

JBJ the hero again, for a while. If you looked at Friday’s lineup with a crooked eye, you weren’t alone. Alex Cora sat Andrew Benintendi in favor of J.D. Martinez for the starting left field spot, leaving Bradley in center field. “JBJ” rewarded his manager yet again for his confidence in his bat, powering yet another clutch hit with the game-tying home run in the top of the eighth inning. He couldn’t come up with one more big hit in extras, but without Bradley’s homer the game might’ve been over in nine innings.

Buehler mows them down. Dave Roberts should be highly questioned for taking Walker Buehler out after the seventh inning, even though he was at 108 pitches. The 24-year-old was in complete command, allowing just two weak singles against a beleaguered Boston lineup. But Roberts instead decided to bring in his closer, Kenley Jansen, for the eighth inning and boy did Jackie Bradley Jr. make him pay.

Who starts Game 4? Alex Cora has severely limited options for who can start Saturday’s potential series clincher. Eduardo Rodriguez is an option, since he only threw six pitches. Drew Pomeranz didn’t pitch at all, so he could get the ball. Chris Sale is probably not Cora’s preferred option, but this is what he’s working with. Odds are, you’ll see a lefty no matter what. Starter is TBA for now.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at matthew.dolloff@bbgi.com.