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Red Sox at Blue Jays Lineups: Jackie Bradley Jr. sits again

And it’s Sale Day

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Texas Rangers Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The Red Sox are coming off their big series in New York that was emotionally draining as a fan and had to be at least a little draining — physically and emotionally — for the players. Obviously, they have to push through any feelings like this as the season marches on. The team heads up to Canada for this weekend’s series in Toronto starting on Friday, and there are a few notable changes with this lineup.

For one thing, Chris Sale is starting! Rick Porcello has flirted with being the best starter on the team in 2018, but Sale knows what’s what and put that conversation to rest last week in Texas. He reminded us who he can be when he’s on and what we should expect more often than not moving forward. If the slider is working as well as it was last weekend, Sale should....well, he should perform as well as he did against Toronto for all of 2017 when he struck out 43 batters and four walks in 27 innings of work.

As far as the batters go, the notables start behind the plate. I mentioned this in the Series Preview, but Sandy Leon was Sale’s personal catcher last year — most of which he dominated, of course — but Christian Vazquez had been getting Sale’s starts this year. The lefty has still been fine, but Leon was back behind the plate in Texas when Sale had his best outing of 2018. That could very well be a coincidence, but any sort of correlation shouldn’t be immediately put aside. Leon is back behind the plate tonight.le had his best

Elsewhere, Jackie Bradley Jr. is back on the bench on Friday for his third straight game. Once again, it is essentially Mitch Moreland taking his spot with Hanley Ramirez moving to DH, J.D. Martinez heading into left field and Andrew Benintendi sliding to center field. On the infield, Rafael Devers is getting the day off. It’s probably an overdue day off as the young third baseman has played more games than any other Red Sox player, and he’s been struggling of late. In his absence, Eduardo Núñez moves over to third base — his bester defensive position — and Brock Holt gets the start at second base for his first start since coming back from the disabled list.

Here are the full lineups.

Game 38 at Blue Jays

Lineup Spot Red Sox Blue Jays
Lineup Spot Red Sox Blue Jays
1 Mookie Betts, RF Teoscar Hernandez, RF
2 Andrew Benintendi, CF Josh Donaldson, 3B
3 Hanley Ramirez, DH Yangervis Solarte, 2B
4 J.D. Martinez, LF Justin Smoak, 1B
5 Xander Bogaerts, SS Kevin Pillar, CF
6 Mitch Moreland, 1B Kendrys Morales, DH
7 Eduardo Núñez, 3B Anthony Alford, LF
8 Brock Holt, 2B Luke Maile, C
9 Sandy Leon, C Lourdes Gurriel Jr., SS
SP Chris Sale, LHP Aaron Sanchez, RHP