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Red Sox vs. White Sox lineup: Newfound roster flexibility hard at work

The White Sox counter with an acid trip of a starting nine. It’s madness.

Chicago White Sox v Boston Red Sox
Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

The Red Sox (61-49) look to make it three in a row over the White Sox (41-66) and five in a row overall when they meet tonight at Fenway Park (7:10 p.m., NESN). It’s Drew Pomeranz (3.46 ERA) against ace-turned-punching bag-slash-punchline James Shields (6.19 ERA), who stinks, hence the White Sox uniform.

These men are not the stories.

The first story is about Boston’s newfound roster flexibility, and John Farrell’s willingness to exercise it. Xander Bogaerts and Hanley Ramirez are out, with Eduardo Nunez batting cleanup and playing shortstop and Brock Holt \o/ stopgapping at second.

The second, and far trippier story, is that of the White Sox. In additon to having catcher/obvious jobber Kevan Smith batting cleanup for the second straight night, and again fielding a knockoff version of their own departed centerfielder Adam Eaton ("Adam Engel;" sure, pal), the Pale, Pale, Pale Hose have, in one way, set a new mark for impotence for not only batting their designated hitter ninth but doing so with a middle infielder.

On the other hand, the middle infielder is prospect Alen Hanson, and this is clearly designed to get him some big-league at-bats. Not that batting him ninth makes a lick of sense in that case either — he is guaranteed, barring substitutions, to have the fewest plate appearances on the team — but these are the White Sox, so. Anyway all of that with Shields on the mound is very Italian cheffy fingers indeed. It’s tempting to say "We’ll probably lose," but that is false. Give them hell.

Here are the full lineups:

Game 111, August 5, 2017 vs. White Sox

Batting Order White Sox Red Sox
Batting Order White Sox Red Sox
1 Tim Anderson, SS Mookie Betts, RF
2 Tyler Saladino, 3B Brock Holt \o/, 2B
3 Jose Abreu, 1B Andrew Benintendi, LF
4 Kevan Smith, C Eduardo Nunez, SS
5 Leury Garcia, RF Rafael Devers, 3B
6 Yoan Moncada, 2B Chris Young, DH
7 Nicky Delmonico, LF Mitch Moreland, 1B
8 Adam Engel, CF Christian Vazquez, C
9 Alen Hanson, DH Jackie Bradley Jr., CF
SP James Shields, RHP Drew Pomeranz, LHP