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Red Sox vs. Yankees lineup: The beginning of the beginning of the end

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Brian Johnson takes on C.C. Sabathia tonight at Fenway.

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Boston Red Sox
Destroy them.
Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Hanley Ramirez was right. Months after he predicted the Red Sox (75-34) would be leading the Yankees (68-38) in the standings by the summer, the Sox stand 5.5 games ahead as they begin a huge four-game series tonight at Fenway (7:10 p.m., NESN, MLBN out-of-network) — without Ramirez, of course. Matt’s series preview can be found... here.

About tonight’s game: Brian Johnson (1-3, 3.45) takes the hill against the ageless wonder C.C. Sabathia (6-4, 3.53), who’s having another good season that could (again) be his last one. He’ll face a Sox lineup that doesn’t look normal — Mitch Moreland, Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers and Sandy León are out, with Steve Pearce, Brock Holt, Eduardo Núñez and Blake Swihart taking their places. Mooke Betts is back, at least.

On the Yankees side, while we don’t wish injuries on anybody, we’re sure happy not to see the DL’ed Aaron Judge in there, all things considered. Someone named Luke Voit starts at DH, and the lineup is still scary af.

About Tuesday’s game: The Sox... lost? Weird, right? Apparently they left a metric ton of men on base. Matt wrote about it, and says they fell to the Phillies 3-1, but I don’t believe it.

Forecast: 89 degrees for this summer showdown. Will tempers be high? Tempers might be high.

Today’s reading: Michelle Berthiaume is living the high life as a JBJ fan, but it’s not always easy.

Today’s listening: A post trade-deadline episode of The Red Seat podcast is up! I’m not on it, so it’s probably good.

A good tweet:

LINEUPS

Game 110 vs. Yankees

Lineup Spot Yankees Red Sox
Lineup Spot Yankees Red Sox
1 Aaron Hicks, CF Mookie Betts, RF
2 Giancarlo Stanton, RF Andrew Benintendi, LF
3 Didi Gregorius, SS Steve Pearce, 1B
4 Gleyber Torres, 2B J.D. Martinez, DH
5 Miguel Andújar, 3B Ian Kinsler, 2B
6 Greg Bird, 1B Eduardo Núñez, 3B
7 Luke Voit, DH Blake Swihart, C
8 Austin Romine, C Brock Holt, SS
9 Brett Gardner, LF Jackie Bradley Jr., CF
SP C.C. Sabathia, LHP Brian Johnson, LHP