The real attention, however, will be on the mound, where the Sox need Felix Doubront to wake up and start providing good innings again.
It was a mediocre June for Doubront, who allowed 22 runs (19 earned) in 29 innings of work to see his ERA balloon from 3.86 to 4.54. With three of his last four outings mediocre at best, the Mariners present Doubront with both an opportunity and a risk.
With the rest of the team having allowed just four runs to the Mariners over 29 innings, Doubront seems perfectly situated for success. This is about as light-hitting as a lineup gets, and they're not exactly hot right now either. This is definitely a big opportunity for Doubront to reverse the trend and start piling up some outs again.
On the other hand, if he fails, then the implications are that much worse.
With a six man rotation that's going on seven without any clear weakest link, every performance is crucial. It seems crazy to say this about the man who was for much of the season our best starter, but if he doesn't perform in his next couple of outings he may need to wait a while before being given the opportunity again.
|BOSTON RED SOX||SEATTLE MARINERS|
|Mike Aviles, SS||Ichiro Suzuki, RF|
|Dustin Pedroia, 2B||Casper Wells, CF|
|David Ortiz, DH||Kyle Seager, 3B|
|Cody Ross, RF||Jesus Montero, C|
|Adrian Gonzalez, 1B||Miguel Olivo, DH|
|Will Middlebrooks, 3B||Justin Smoak, 1B|
|Daniel Nava, LF||Dustin Ackley, 2B|
|Kelly Shoppach, C||Chone Figgins, LF|
|Brent Lillibridge, CF||Brendan Ryan, SS|