Game 1 of the American League Division Series will start at 7:32 p.m. Friday for the top-seeded Red Sox, Major League Baseball announced Tuesday.
The Sox will host the winner of Wednesday’s 8:08 p.m. wild-card game between the Athletics and Yankees in New York
Game 2 of the Division Series Saturday will start at 8:15 p.m. The remaining game times for the best-of-five series have not been determined.
The entire Red Sox series will be broadcast by TBS.
MLB also announced the umpire crew for the series. On Friday, Corey Blaser will have home plate, with Dan Bellino at first base, crew chief Mike Winters at second base, Angel Hernandez at third base, Fieldin Culbreth in left field, and D.J. Reyburn in right field.
On the menu
The Red Sox worked out at Fenway Park Tuesday, all the activities moved inside because of rain. More extensive workouts are planned for Wednesday and Thursday.
Manager Alex Cora said Wednesday would be a busy day, with live batting practice along with infield workouts.
The Sox have a team dinner scheduled for Wednesday night, something similar to the get-together they had before Opening Day in March.
“Have everybody together and actually talk about the regular season, turn the page, and be ready for Friday,” Cora said.
With the rain Tuesday, Game 1 starter Chris Sale threw his bullpen session indoors. The lefthander is working on correcting a delivery flaw that led to a shorter extension toward the plate and subsequent decrease in velocity in his last start.
“Honestly, it’s not a huge adjustment,” Cora said. “He saw it first-hand and should be easy to fix.”
Sale has a 3.75 earned run average in four starts since coming off the disabled list and has struck out 18 with one walk over 12 innings.
But his fastball peaked at 94 m.p.h. in his last start.
“We do feel if the mechanics are close or perfect, the velocity will come with it,” Cora said.
Durability could be a bigger issue than mechanics in Game 1 considering Sale has not pitched more than six innings since July 11.
Two stays on the DL because of shoulder inflammation caused him to miss six weeks.
Cora is convinced Sale is fully healthy.
“He’s been going through his [progression] the right way,” the manager said. “It’s nothing compared to what it was the first time he went on the DL.
“I’m 100 percent sure he’s healthy and he’s going to be fine.”
David Price is scheduled for Game 2 and Rick Porcello for Game 3. Nathan Eovaldi almost certainly would start Game 4 if it’s against the Yankees. Eduardo Rodriguez is a possibility if it’s the Athletics.
Eovaldi will be available out of the bullpen in Game 1 regardless.
For the first time since 2013, the Sox will open the playoffs at home. They are 1-6 in the postseason the last two years, losing the first two games of the series both times.
“Our fan base is definitely huge and we’ve played good at home, too,” Mookie Betts said. “To be here is something to our advantage, for sure.”
The Sox were 57-24 at home this season.
The Sox will wait until Friday to announce their roster for the series. But some moves have already been made.
Brandon Phillips packed up and went home. The 37-year-old infielder appeared in nine games in September.
Phillips had a two-run homer in the ninth inning at Atlanta Sept. 5 to help the Sox rally from a 7-1 deficit and beat the Braves, 9-8. But he was 2 for 20 from there.
Infielder Tzu-Wei Lin, first baseman Sam Travis, and lefthanded reliever Robby Scott were sent to Fort Myers, Fla., to work out there in case they are needed.
Lefthander Brian Johnson (4-5, 4.17) and righthander Hector Velazquez (7-2, 3.18) were told they would not be on the roster but will be allowed to remain with the team.
Johnson (99⅓ ) was fifth on the team in innings and Velazquez (85) was sixth.
“I let them know they were very important,” Cora said. “I mean, no chance that we survive pitching-wise without them accepting their roles and using them in different roles. They should be proud of what they did.”
Cora has family members coming into Boston from Puerto Rico Friday for the first two games. His older brother Joey Cora also will be on hand. He just finished his second season as third base coach of the Pittsburgh Pirates. “That’s exciting, having a guy that can second-guess me the whole weekend,” Cora said with a laugh. “To have them around is going to be great. This is a great platform for me and I know they’re very proud of what I’m doing.” . . . Cora said the postseason roster would not change much whether the Sox play the Athletics or Yankees, perhaps just one relief pitcher . . . Craig Kimbrel threw 3⅓ innings and 67 pitches over the final 15 days of the season. Would that allow him to work more than one inning in postseason games? “We’ll see Friday,” Cora said with an expression that suggested Kimbrel would be leaned on . . . J.D. Martinez is the team’s finalist for the Hank Aaron Award, which recognizes the top offensive performer in each league. That will be presented during the World Series . . . Sox players and coaches were wearing new sweatshirts with the playoffs logo and “Do Damage” across the front . . . Red Sox game broadcasts on NESN averaged a 6.8 household rating this season, up 24 percent from a year ago, the network said.