Red Sox vs. Blue Jays: Mike Napoli, Xander Bogaerts sit against Brandon Morrow

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The Red Sox will be without Mike Napoli and Xander Bogaerts as they take on Brandon Morrow and the Toronto Blue Jays.

The Red Sox will be without Xander Bogaerts and Mike Napoli Saturday afternoon as they send the troubled Clay Buchholz to the mound against Brandon Morrow and the Toronto Blue Jays.

Today's Lineups

BOSTON RED SOX TORONTO BLUE JAYS
Dustin Pedroia - 2B Jose Reyes - SS
Shane Victorino - RF Melky Cabrera - LF
David Ortiz - DH Jose Bautista - DH
Mike Carp - 1B Juan Francisco - 1B
Grady Sizemore - LF Dioner Navarro - C
A.J. Pierzynski - C Colby Rasmus - CF
Will Middlebrooks - 3B Brett Lawrie - 3B
Jonathan Herrera - SS Moises Sierra - RF
Jackie Bradley - CF Ryan Goins - 2B
Clay Buchholz - RHP Brandon Morrow - RHP

So I'm having trouble figuring this one out.

The absence of Bogaerts might make sense in the event that John Farrell is looking to put his team's best defensive foot forward behind Clay Buchholz. But that doesn't really explain Mike Carp playing for Mike Napoli. Napoli does have some bad Morrow-specific splits, but those are in a sample size of about 16 plate appearances making them pretty much irrelevant regardless of how awful they may be. Particularly when you consider that we're already sacrificing offense for defense with Herrera and Bogaerts.

On the other hand, this could all be about rest and days off and whatnot. But man, with the team in the shape that it's in, and with Napoli coming off a night which saw him reach base four times, is this really the moment to be sitting two starters at once?

(Mini-update: Apparently Bogaerts has the flu, which helps make some sense of this)

Either way, first pitch is scheduled for 1:07 p.m. EST (again, Canada is strange) with broadcasts on NESN and WEEI.

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