Boston Red Sox (90-71) @ Baltimore Orioles (68-93)
Jon Lester (15-9, 3.49) @ Alfredo Simon (4-9, 4.85)
7:05 PM EDT | Oriole Park at Camden Yards (Baltimore, MD)
TV: NESN, ESPN RADIO: WEEI 850, WWZN 1510
Ryan Lavarnway’s two homers were the tonic the Red Sox needed to take the game last night against the Orioles and maintain their tie in the Wild Card race with the Rays. As the Rays will be facing the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees pitchers tonight (Yankee lineup here courtesy of Amalie Benjamin) and the Sox will face the regular Orioles lineup, tonight’s game for the Sox (as with the last few Sox games) is a must win. Must. Win.
Taking the mound for the Red Sox on short rest will be Jon Lester. In his last start Lester lasted a mere 2.2 innings against the Yankees, allowing a season-high eight runs on eight hits and a walk. However, on April 28, Lester twirled a beauty against the Orioles, going eight innings and giving up only two runs. Lester is 14-0 in 17 starts with a 2.33 ERA in his career against the Orioles.
Alfredo Simon faces the Red Sox tonight. In his only career start against the Red Sox (on July 9), Simon lasted 4.2 innings and gave up three runs on eight hits and three walks, taking the loss. In his eight starts at home this year, Simon is 1-4 with a 5.17 ERA and has four quality starts.
Boston Red Sox
- Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
- Dustin Pedroia, 2B
- David Ortiz, DH
- Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
- Ryan Lavarnway, C
- J.D. Drew, RF
- Marco Scutaro, SS
- Carl Crawford, LF
- Mike Aviles, RF
- Robert Andino, 2B
- J.J. Hardy, SS
- Nick Markakis, RF
- Vladimir Guerrero, DH
- Matt Wieters, C
- Adam Jones, CF
- Mark Reynolds, 1B
- Chris Davis, 3B
- Nolan Reimold, LF
Boston: Kevin Youkilis, left hip bursitis and sports hernia (day-to-day)
Baltimore: Cesar Izturis, left groin strain (placed on 15-day DL August 8); Ryan Adams, sports hernia (day-to-day)
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– According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Jon Lester’s 14-0 career record against the Orioles is the longest win streak in history against the Orioles/Browns to start a career, and is the longest win streak for any active pitcher against any team.
– On September 28, 1941, Ted Williams went 6-8 in a doubleheader against the Philadelphia A’s to finish the season with a .406 batting average. No other player has hit .400 since. Also, on September 28, 1958, Teddy Ballgame went 2-4 in a game against the Washington Senators to capture the batting title with a .328 average, beating out teammate Pete Runnels’ .322 mark. Williams became the first player in his forties to win a batting title.
– And for today’s Totally Untrue Fun Fact: Sixty percent of the time, Ryan Lavarnway works every time.