Red Sox vs. Rangers lineups: Jacoby Ellsbury returns as Red Sox aim for series win

USA TODAY Sports

Jacoby Ellsbury is back in the lineup, but somehow the starting nine looks quite a bit worse.

The Red Sox are out for a series win Thursday night, and they'll have Jacoby Ellsbury back at the top of the lineup as they try to get to Derek Holland for more than the two runs they scored on Wednesday.

Boston Red Sox (36-24)

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
  2. Jonny Gomes, LF
  3. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  4. David Ortiz, DH
  5. Mike Napoli, 1B
  6. Daniel Nava, RF
  7. David Ross, C
  8. Jose Iglesias, SS
  9. Pedro Ciriaco, 3B

Starting Pitcher -- Jon Lester

Texas Rangers (36-22)

  1. Elvis Andrus, SS
  2. David Murphy, LF
  3. Lance Berkman, 1B
  4. Adrian Beltre, 3B
  5. Nelson Cruz, RF
  6. A.J. Pierzynski, C
  7. Jeff Baker, DH
  8. Craig Gentry, CF
  9. Jurickson Profar, 2B

Starting Pitcher -- Derek Holland

And yet, somehow, the Red Sox have a much worse lineup tonight. Jonny Gomes was brought in to hit vs. lefties, so he'll keep on getting these at bats until we've crossed whatever critical point it is where Jon Farrell decides he's not simply unlucky or slumping, but done. It's sound thinking, but also hard to swallow while he isn't hitting, and doubly so while Carp is.

Then there's Pedro Ciriaco, and it does kind of make sense that, if you're going to give Drew a game off, it should come against a lefty. But...it's Pedro Ciriaco. How much more really needs to be said?

The positives? Jon Lester is on the mound. The rest of the lineup doesn't look too bad, especially if Ellsbury can carry over his momentum despite the layoff. And every once in a while that stopped Ciriaco or Gomes clock will just happen to be in the right place at the right time. With a pitcher like Derek Holland on the mound, it might not be so bad to just roll those dice...

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