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Red Sox vs. Blue Jays lineups: Sandoval returns

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Pablo Sandoval is back in action Monday afternoon.

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Pablo Sandoval is back in the lineup and batting second Monday afternoon as the Red Sox kick off a series against the Blue Jays.

Ben Revere - LF Mookie Betts - CF
Josh Donaldson - 3B Pablo Sandoval - 3B
Jose Bautista - RF Xander Bogaerts - SS
Edwin Encarnacion - DH David Ortiz - DH
Troy Tulowitzki - SS Travis Shaw - 1B
Justin Smoak - 1B Rusney Castillo - LF
Russell Martin - C Brock Holt - 2B
Ryan Goins - 2B Blake Swihart - C
Kevin Pillar - CF Jackie Bradley - RF
Mark Buehrle - LHP Rick Porcello - RHP

Fifteen innings over two starts is not exactly a large sample size. Some really bad pitchers have thrown fifteen good innings in a row. They may have even managed to strike out 18 batters in the process, for that matter. But man, it's hard to look at Rick Porcello these last couple games and not think maybe, just maybe...he's fixed?

Make no mistake, Porcello cannot save his season. To reach a 4.00 ERA on the year, he'd need to throw 40 scoreless innings in a row. He doesn't have that kind of time left, even if it were at all realistic that even a fixed Rick Porcello could achieve that kind of dominance.

But he does have a chance to show the Red Sox that they were not quite so crazy to not only trade for him, but lock him into a lengthy extension as soon as possible. He has the opportunity to show that he's worked out the issues of 2016 and can be a real quality contributor in 2016. A good day against the league's most dangerous lineup would go a long way to convincing both the fans, and Dave Dombrowski.

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