Coming off the most pathetic loss of the season, the Red Sox give Xander Bogaerts the night off against the right-handed Chris Archer.
|BOSTON RED SOX||TAMPA BAY RAYS|
|Mookie Betts, RF||Logan Forsythe, 2B|
|Dustin Pedroia, 2B||Brad Miller, SS|
|David Ortiz, DH||Evan Longoria, 3B|
|Hanley Ramirez, 1B||Logan Morrison, 1B|
|Jackie Bradley Jr., CF||Desmond Jennings, CF|
|Travis Shaw, 3B||Oswaldo Arcia, RF|
|Bryce Brentz, LF||Taylor Motter, LF|
|Christian Vazquez, C||Nick Franklin, DH|
|Marco Hernandez, SS||Hank Conger, C|
|Starting Pitcher -- Rick Porcello||Starting Pitcher -- Chris Archer|
The Red Sox had made it known Bogaerts would be getting the night off today after his and Farrell's comments that a break was much-needed, with the pitching matchup taking precedence over the idea of getting him a two-day break with Thursday's off-day.
Yesterday very much felt like rock bottom, with the Sox letting the Rays break their 11-game losing streak in the loudest way possible. But that's ignoring just how much further the Red Sox can fall. Shocking though it may be to realize, there's still a +0.5 next to their names in the wild card column. And while they've fallen back to the point where even .500 teams aren't so far from their heels, the fact is that the way they're playing right now makes it seem entirely possible the Red Sox will join their ranks before long.
Mind you, I did just get done arguing that the Red Sox are perhaps not so bad as they seem to be, and that the real problem is the two rotation spots we just passed up. But between the difficulty with applying logic to what is very much an emotional thing in fandom, and the simple reality that you can't rely on anything close to a 1.000 winning percentage from the three good pitchers, I'm terrified to see what the Sox might have in store for us tonight.
First pitch is at 7:10 p.m. ET with broadcasts on NESN and WEEI.