Boston Red Sox (39-27) @ Tampa Bay Rays (36-31)
Josh Beckett (5-1, 2.06) @ Jeremy Hellickson (7.4, 3.03)
7:10 PM EDT | Tropicana Field (St. Petersburg, FL)


Boston: Bobby Jenks, left back tightness (Placed on the 15-day on DL June 8); Rich Hill, left elbow sprain (Placed on the 15-day DL on June 3, retroactive to June 2) Franklin Morales, left forearm strain (Placed on the 15-day DL on May 29, retroactive to May 26); Daisuke Matsuzaka, sprained elbow (Placed on the 15-day DL on May 17, transferred to the 60-day DL on June 3); Junichi Tazawa, right elbow surgery (placed on the 60-day DL on March 26)

Tampa Bay: Jeff Niemann, lower back strain (Placed on the 15-day DL on May 6, retroactive to May 5)


Well that came to an abrupt end. The Rays, behind “Complete Game” James Shields, shut out the Red Sox 4-0 to end the Red Sox nine-game winning streak. Taking the mound to hopefully start a new streak is Josh Beckett. In his last start Josh got the win against the New York Yankees, pitching seven innings while giving up two runs on four hits and two walks against six strikeouts. In 16 games started against the Rays, Beckett has a 7-4 mark with a 3.43 ERA. Beckett’s 2.06 ERA ranks second in the Majors behind Jered Weaver’s 2.058 ERA, and is second in the American League in opponent average (.188, behind Justin Verlander’s 1.85). Again, watch out for Johnny and Evan: Damon owns a 14-48 (.292) mark with two homers and nine RBI against Beckett, and Longoria has hit him for a 12-34 mark (.353) with two homers and eight RBI.

Rookie righthander Jeremy Hellickson (the #6 prospect in the game according to Baseball America) takes the ball for the Rays tonight. In his last start, Hellickson gave up a career high five runs in 5-2/3 innings against the Orioles, surrendering a solo homer and a grand slam before settling down. Among rookie pitchers, Hellickson ranks first in wins (7) and opponent average (.208), is second in ERA (3.03) and strikeouts (52), and is third in innings pitched (77.1). This will be Jeremy’s second start and third appearance against the Red Sox, so nobody on the Sox has had statistically significant success against Hellickson. Yet.


Red Sox

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
  2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  3. Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
  4. Kevin Youkilis, 3B
  5. David Ortiz, DH
  6. Carl Crawford, LF
  7. Jed Lowrie, SS
  8. J.D. Drew, RF
  9. Jason Varitek, C

Tampa Bay

  1. Johnny Damon, DH
  2. Ben Zobrist, 2B
  3. Matt Joyce, RF
  4. Evan Longoria, 3B
  5. Casey Kotchman, 1B
  6. B.J. Upton, CF
  7. John Jaso, C
  8. Justin Ruggiano, LF
  9. Reid Brignac, SS

Fun Facts

– Adrian Gonzalez leads the Majors with a .347 batting average, 60 RBI, and 22 doubles, is tied for the Major League lead with 159 total bases, and leads the American League with 94 hits and 29 multi-hit games. Yeah, he’ll do.

– According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the last time a pitcher threw a shutout to end a Red Sox winning streak of at least nine games was Jim Abbott of the California Angels on August 30, 1989.

– On June 15, 1947, two days after being traded to the Red Sox from Chicago for Rudy York, first baseman Jake Jones hit two homers and a two-run single in a doubleheader sweep of the White Sox.

– And for today’s Totally Untrue Fun Fact: Roberto Luongo eats worms. Go Bruins!