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The Guru
Contributing Writer

The Boston Red Sox (36-23) and Texas Rangers (35-22) face off for game two of the three game set tonight at Fenway Park. The Sox are 18-12 at home and have won four of five at Fenway. Last night the Sox won a laugher scoring 17 runs, hitting four home runs including Jackie Bradley Jr’s first of his career. Four Red Sox players, Stephen Drew, Daniel Nava, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Mike Carp each had at least three hits off six Ranger pitchers including outfielder David Murphy who proved to be Texas’ best arm of the night.

John Lackey is on the hill for the Red Sox. Lackey is 3-5 with a 2.96 ERA on the year. Lackey pitched well, but lost his last start in Philadelphia giving up 6 hits, 3 runs in 5 innings. At Fenway Park this year Lackey is 2-1 with a 0.90 ERA and 20 strikeouts in 20 innings pitched. Lackey has faced the Rangers 38 times in his career which is tied for the fourth most all-time. Only Jack Morris (41), Roger Clemens (40) and Mike Moore (39) have more career starts against Texas. Lackey is 12-14 with a 6.14 ERA against the Rangers.

First pitch 7:10 EDT. Here’s tonight’s starting nine:

1.Nava, RF
2. Carp, LF
3. Pedroia, 2B
4. Ortiz, DH
5. Napoli, 1B
6. Saltalamacchia, C
7. Drew, SS
8. Iglesias, 3B
9. Bradley Jr., CF

Lackey, P

It’s interesting to note that manager John Farrell is sticking with the same lineup that scored 17 runs last night.

Texas starter Alexi Ogando is making his first start since May 15. Before going on the DL with tricep inflammation, Ogando was 4-2 with a 3.08 ERA. Ogando beat the Sox May 4 in Texas 5-1.

Ellsbury out again: Jacoby Ellsbury has missed the last five games with a groin injury. A DL stint remains a possibility. Jackie Bradley Jr, will get the start in center again. Since being called up, Bradley is hitting .294 with four runs scored, a homer and three RBI.

Nava setting the tone early: Since taking over the leadoff spot Nava is 8 of 17 with six runs scored and three extra-base hits. Nava is having a breakout season batting .307, slugging .500 with eight home runs and 38 RBI through 52 games. That's better than outfielders with names like Braun, Bautista and Harper.

Rangers hitters vs. Lackey: Of the four Rangers with more than 20 at-bats against Lackey, none are hitting above .225. Adrian Beltre (.207) is the only current Ranger with a homer against Lackey, A.J. Pierzynski (.224), Nelson Cruz (.222) and Elvis Andrus (.160) have all struggled.

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

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The Guru 6/05/2013 04:31:00 PM Edit
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