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Ben Whitehead
Contributing Writer

The rain was a god thing Friday night for the Boston Red Sox, who took an 8-1 win over the Cleveland Indians. There’s more rain in the forecast today, but all indications from the Sox media relations department are that the game will be played and start on time. The two teams split the first two games of this four-game set, meaning the winner today has a chance to win the series tomorrow. Good news then for Red Sox Nation as lefty ace Jon Lester goes for the Red Sox (29-20).

Here is the Sox lineup for this afternoon’s contest (first pitch – 1:35 pm EDT, weather permitting):

1. Ellsbury, CF
2. Gomes, LF
3. Pedroia, 2B
4. Ortiz, DH
5. Napoli, 1B
6. Nava, RF
7. Ross, C
8. Iglesias, SS
9. Ciriaco, 3B

Lester, P

Scott Kazmir takes the mound for the Indians (27-20). He is 2-2 with a 6.35 ERA in six games. The lefty was lucky to earn a no-decision in his last start as he gave up five runs on seven hits in three innings Monday against the Mariners.

Home sweet home
Lester (6-1, 3.15 ERA) has been dominant on the Fenway mound this season. His 2-0 record with a 1.66 ERA in three starts is the sixth best rate among American League starters with 20-plus innings in home starts. Overall, the Sox are 10-5 in day games and the .667 win percentage leads the majors. If the rain holds off enough, the odds are in favor of Dirty Water.

Unfamiliar left side
With Will Middlebrooks on the DL and Stephen Drew getting a day off and still healing from some back tightness, the Sox turn to two of their younger players to fill in the left side of the infield. Jose Iglesias, called up to replace Middlebrooks, mans shortstop today and Pedro Ciriaco will play third. Ciriaco is batting .175 with a homer and three RBIs in 40 at-bats. Iglesias is hitting .435 with an RBI. Iglesias went 1-for-3 in Friday’s game and scored a run, but struck out twice.

Let us know what you think about tonight’s game by commenting below.

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Ben Whitehead 5/25/2013 01:12:00 PM Edit
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