Also familiar with each other: Red Sox manager Alex Cora and the Astros. He was Houston’s bench coach last year during the team’s run to its first title.
MILES AND MILES
Wade Miley was a journeyman left-hander when he signed a minor league contract with the Brewers at the start of spring training. He injured his oblique early in the season, spent a lot of time in Double-A and hoped he’d have a chance to contribute.
Miley came back, delivered and now gets to start Game 2 of the NL Championship Series as the Brewers try to take a 2-0 lead over the Dodgers at Miller Park. Hyun-Jin Ryu pitches for Los Angeles.
J.D. Martinez wants to thank the Astros — not get back at them — for releasing him when he was struggling. The Red Sox slugger says his growing pains in Houston taught him “how to fail,” a lesson he credits with transforming him into an MVP candidate who helped Boston win a team-record 108 games.
Martinez made his big league debut for Houston in 2011, driving in 28 runs during his first full month in the majors. After playing part time the next two years, he was 26 and batting .167 in the spring of 2014 when the Astros released him, preferring to give the at-bats to top prospect George Springer.
Martinez landed with Detroit that season and by 2015 he was an All-Star. He totaled 45 home runs last year with the Tigers and Arizona, then hit .330 with 43 homers and a major league-high 130 RBIs this season.