BOSTON — The Red Sox are taking a simple approach to try to get back into their AL division series with the Angels.
Certainly the home crowd should be a boost. The quirkiness of Fenway Park provides an edge. Their history of series comebacks is a source of confidence, or at least calm. Even the unusually early noon start time could be to their advantage, as the adjustment to East Coast time may be tougher on the Angels.
But, manager Terry Francona said Saturday, there's really only one thing that matters.
"We can say everything we want … ," he said. "But the best thing for us to do is show up and win (today). That kind of simplifies things."
The Sox have been held to one run, a .131 average and two extra-base hits through the 18 innings of their two losses, but Francona isn't planning any changes to the lineup besides the usual adjustment for a left-handed starter, probably flipping Jason Bay and David Ortiz.
"There's no magic button to push," he said. "Just need to play as good as you can. … I mean, I understand that we need to not lose, but you can't do too many crazy things. Or it doesn't help you win."
BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS: Today is the fourth home game the Sox have played this season starting 12:35 or earlier, and Francona said they have something of a routine: "We'll show up and do what we always do on early games: have 12 pieces of bacon, a Red Bull and go get 'em."
TWINS LOSE INFIELDER: Minnesota 3B Matt Tolbert was taken off the playoff roster with a strained left oblique muscle. Former Ray Brendan Harris will start at third base today.
ADENHART CASE: The trial of Andrew Thomas Gallo, 22, charged with driving drunk and killing Angels RHP Nick Adenhart, was delayed for six months at the request of his new defense attorney, deputy public defender Bryan Harris.
MISCELLANY: The Angels tried to combat the time change by working out at home Saturday morning then flying to Boston, scheduled to arrive around 8 p.m. The Sox flew back after the game and landed at 8 a.m. … LHP Jon Lester will come back on short rest if there is a Game 4 Monday, facing Angels LHP Joe Saunders.
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.