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Red Sox vs. Mariners lineups: Shane Victorino returns, defense much-improved

Shane Victorino is back in the lineup, and Jackie Bradley Jr. is up from Pawtucket, giving the outfield defense some much-needed help.

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Yesterday we dealt with the awful reality of a Carp - Nava - Gomes defense in the outfield. Today, looking at Nava - Bradley - Victorino, it's hard to fully grasp the difference.

Boston Red Sox (54-37)

  1. Daniel Nava, LF
  2. Shane Victorino, RF
  3. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  4. David Ortiz, DH
  5. Mike Napoli, 1B
  6. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
  7. Jose Iglesias, SS
  8. Brock Holt, 3B
  9. Jackie Bradley Jr., CF

Starting Pitcher -- Allen Webster

Seattle Mariners (40-49)

  1. Brad Miller, SS
  2. Nick Franklin, 2B
  3. Raul Ibanez, LF
  4. Kendrys Morales, DH
  5. Kyle Seager, 3B
  6. Justin Smoak, 1B
  7. Michael Saunders, RF
  8. Mike Zunino, C
  9. Dustin Ackley, CF

Starting Pitcher -- Hisashi Iwakuma

Unfortunately, defense alone can't help Allen Webster, as we've seen this year. He has to help himself. His last outing wasn't quite so miserable, but he's still got a ways to go in terms of consistency before we can really feels comfortable with throwing him out there, even against the Mariners.

Of course, saying "even against the Mariners" holds less impact when you consider they put up eleven on the Red Sox last night.

As for Hisashi Iwakuma, about the only positive in facing him is that he's not Felix Hernandez. He's done nothing but produce since he debuted last year, making the NPB-to-MLB transition look easy. No, Webster can't assume he'll have a ton of backup tonight.

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