Game 123: Red Sox at Royals - Can't lose to these guys, eh?

Ben Whitehead
Contributing Writer

Are we in for a third extra-inning game this series? It makes for some fun baseball watching. Of course, it’s more fun for Red Sox Nation when Boston wins. To avoid dropping their second straight series, the Red Sox (72-50) will need to pull out a win tonight against the Toronto Blue Jays (55-65).

On the mound for the Red Sox will be Jake Peavy, who is 9-4 with a 4.50 ERA overall this season, but 1-0 with a 6.00 ERA in two starts with Boston. Peavy had a stellar outing against Arizona in his Red Sox debut, but struggled mightily in his last start against the Royals. He went just five innings and allowed 10 hits with six runs and no strikeouts in a no-decision. Prior to that, Peavy had won three straight starts and will look to get back to those winning ways tonight.

Here is the lineup for the Red Sox tonight (first pitch – 7:07 pm EDT):

1. Ellsbury, CF
2. Victorino, RF
3. Pedroia, 2B
4. Ortiz, DH
5. Gomes, LF
6. Drew, SS
7. Lavarnway, C
8. Nava, 1B
9. Middlebrooks, 3B

Peavy, P

That lineup will face Mark Buehrle, who is 8-7 with a 4.43 ERA. Buehrle struggled for most of the season, but has won three of his last four starts, including two starts in which he didn’t allow a run.

No longer White Sox
As you noticed, the two starting pitchers tonight are both former Chicago White Sox pitchers. The two were teammates from 2009-11. Buerhle was with Chicago from 2000-11, before going to Miami for a season and then being traded this past offseason to Toronto. Peavy began his career with San Diego and was traded to the White Sox in 2009. The Red Sox acquired him before the trade deadline this season.

The Curse of Ben Affleck and Good Will Hunting
It was pointed out by a fan of RedSoxLife that there seems to be a sort of jinx on playing on this date, August 15. Ever since the movie Good Will Hunting was released in 1998, the Red Sox are 0-13 on August 15. The date is significant because it is actor Ben Affleck's birthday (Affleck starred in Good Will Hunting).

This and that
David Ortiz has a career .352 average in 71 at-bats against Buehrle with three home runs and 13 RBI. Seven different Red Sox have at least 10 ABs against the Toronto starter, and five are hitting .300 or better against him … Mike Napoli, who came through in the clutch with a two-run ninth inning home Wednesday that tied the game at 2, sits tonight. Napoli is 6-for-42 in the month of August. Daniel Nava is playing first base … Two Toronto outfielders won’t be in the lineup tonight. One of them is now a former Blue Jay, as Emilio Bonifacio was traded to Kansas City Wednesday. The other is center fielder Colby Rasmus, who was placed on the DL with a straight left oblique muscle … The Red Sox are 5-3 against Toronto at the Rogers Centre this year and have outscored the Jays 46-26 in those eight games. Boston is 9-6 overall against the Jays in 2013.

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

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