Red Sox fans might have been worried that, with much of the starting lineup hitting the road on Thursday, there would be an underwhelming lineup left to play Friday night in a rare televised game against the Yankees. Well worry not, becuase Christian Vazquez and Shane Victorino are the only men absent, with Daniel Nava and Ryan Hanigan providing solid replacements.
Boston Red Sox (7-2)
- Mookie Betts, CF
- Dustin Pedroia, 2B
- David Ortiz, DH
- Hanley Ramirez, LF
- Pablo Sandoval, 3B
- Mike Napoli, 1B
- Daniel Nava, RF
- Xander Bogaerts, SS
- Ryan Hanigan, C
Starting Pitcher -- Rick Porcello
The one real oddity of this batting order is seeing Xander Bogaerts below even Daniel Nava, though that can be explained away easily enough as John Farrell trying to break up Napoli and Bogaerts with a lefty in Nava.
Also of note: Mookie Betts and Shane Victorino are not in the lineup together, technically keeping some small amount of life in the leadoff question. Chances are it's Betts' spot to lose, especially since it's still not entirely clear who's going to be given the "starting" right field role, however much Rusney Castillo's injury may have set back his cause.
This is only Porcello's second start of the spring, and only his second game against professional competition after relieving Clay Buchholz against Northeastern. His first outing against the other New York team went swimmingly, and this time he'll have Sandoval, Pedroia, and Napoli behind him rather than Weeks, Holt, and LaHair. Can't hurt.
First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. EST with broadcasts on NESN, the MLB Network, and WEEI.