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Red Sox vs. Mariners: Seeking the statement start from Allen Webster

Allen Webster has a couple of decent outings in his pocket, but he's still yet to show he can put it all together on the mound.

Jim Rogash

Xander Bogaerts remains absent from the Red Sox lineup Sunday, while David Ortiz makes the start despite leaving Saturday's game with an elbow injury.

Today's Lineups

Austin Jackson - CF Brock Holt - SS
Dustin Ackley - LF Dustin Pedroia - 2B
Robinson Cano - 2B David Ortiz - DH
Kendrys Morales - DH Yoenis Cespedes - LF
Kyle Seager - 3B Mike Napoli - 1B
Logan Morrison - 1B Allen Craig - RF
Chris Denorfia - RF Will Middlebrooks - 3B
Mike Zunino - C Mookie Betts - CF
Chris Taylor - SS Christian Vazquez - C
Hisashi Iwakuma - RHP Allen Webster - RHP

There was little real concern that Ortiz' elbow--hit by a 92 MPH fastball last night--was going to be a real problem. He was expected to play today, and here he is, batting third as the designated hitter, the same as ever.

The Cespedes-in-left, Craig-in-right situation continues unabated, and seems likely to do so for the rest of the year. The long-term plan has to be to have Cespedes in right and Craig in front of the Monster, but John Farrell seems more focused on easing their transition from Oakland and St. Louis respectively, and the relatively easy defensive transition can be dealt with in spring training next year if the plan still features both in the corners.

After the tragedy that was Brandon Workman's start last night, it's awfully rough having to go straight into an Allen Webster start, but at the very least Webster has looked slightly better in his last couple of outings. Maybe he's establishing some momentum and confidence, or maybe this is just proof that even the least effective of pitchers have bull periods. Frankly, we're still waiting on that statement performance from Webster, where he actually harnesses his at raw stuff and shuts down a lineup. Until he shows the ability to do that, though, it's going to be hard to give him much in the way of credit for even his better outings. Maybe today is the day, or maybe we're in for another disaster. We'll see...

First pitch is at 1:35 p.m. ET with broadcasts on NESN and WEEI.