Mookie Betts won the batting title in 2018, and he could end up as the league’s Most Valuable Player. Yet Betts is finding out that the playoffs are a very different place.
Despite starting Game 1 of the American League Championship Series against Justin Verlander and the Astros with a base hit, Betts continued what has been a relatively quiet postseason so far.
This was magnified in the fifth inning, when the 26-year-old outfielder strode to the plate with the bases loaded. Verlander was reeling from three straight walks, and he left a fastball over the middle for Betts.
Unfortunately for the Red Sox, Betts could only drag a ground ball to third base, resulting in a fielder’s choice, with Eduardo Nunez getting thrown out at home. Finishing the game 1-4, Betts – who led the league with a .346 average – is currently hitting .200 in the playoffs.
Afterward, Betts acknowledged that he missed his chance against Verlander.
“I was just looking for a good pitch to hit and I got it, just didn’t do anything with it,” Betts said. “It was one of those situations where I just didn’t get the job done.”
“Fastball middle-middle. You can’t miss that pitch. Especially against Verlander in a situation like that,” Betts concluded.
In his career, Betts is now 11-46 (.238) in the postseason, with no home runs and two RBIs.