The Red Sox have put together back-to-back wins for the first time in May. Now they'll try to make in an honest-to-God streak as they send Justin Masterson to the mound against Drew Pomeranz and the A's.
|BOSTON RED SOX (15-17)||OAKLAND A'S (12-22)|
|Mookie Betts - CF||Coco Crisp - LF|
|Dustin Pedroia - 2B||Marcus Semien - SS|
|David Ortiz - DH||Josh Reddick - RF|
|Hanley Ramirez - LF||Billy Butler - DH|
|Mike Napoli - 1B||Stephen Vogt - C|
|Pablo Sandoval - 3B||Max Muncy - 1B|
|Shane Victorino - RF||Brett Lawrie - 3B|
|Xander Bogaerts - SS||Sam Fuld - CF|
|Blake Swihart - C||Eric Sogard - 2B|
If you've read much on this site of late, you won't be surprised to hear me say that Justin Masterson is not exactly the ideal guy for the Red Sox to have on the mound tonight as they go for said streak. Even after allowing four runs in four innings in a six-walk debacle last time out, Masterson's last four starts have produced a decent 4.09 ERA. But the underlying issues remain the same, and it's hard to imagine his combination of an 87 MPH fastball and a wild frisbee slider keeping runs off the board on any given night. Particularly one which will see him facing seven left-handed (or switch) hitters.
On the bright side, Drew Pomeranz hasn't given opposing hitters much to fear since his days as a top prospect, the Athletics bullpen is always vulnerable, and even if Masterson isn't exactly reliable, he's still at least capable of having a good day when the slider is under control. That three-plus game streak--something the Red Sox haven't seen since April 9th through 11th--is within reach.
First pitch is at 10:05 p.m. ET with broadcasts on NESN and WEEI.