Game 15: Red Sox at White Sox - Pedroia returns as Boston looks to end streak
Ben Whitehead Contributing Writer
Things went south in South Side Chicago for the Boston Red Sox. Not only did they collect just one run on three hits ... not only did Mike Napoli dislocate his finger sliding into second ... and not only was the temperature at or below freezing ... to top it off, Xander Bogaerts made a throwing error to allow the game-winning run to score, giving Boston its third straight loss and fourth in its last five games. The Red Sox are abysmal right now, there's no sugar-coating it. But hope can be restored.
Napoli's finger injury only looked bad, but he appears to be OK. Dustin Pedroia returns tonight and the Red Sox (5-9) can even the series against the Chicago White Sox and try to pick up some steam. With Shane Victorino, Will Middlebrooks and Koji Uehara on the mend, and the season only 14 games in, there's still plenty of time to make up ground in the AL East.
Tonight, Clay Buchholz gets the start, looking to build on his last start when he gave up just two earned runs in six innings against the Yankees. He looked more like his early 2013 self in that outing than he did in his first start. Buchholz struck out six batters and has yet to walk anyone this season, but has given up three homers. His 6.97 ERA through two starts isn't indicative of the star pitcher Boston hopes to have later this season, so Buchholz needs to continue to have impressive outings to bring that down.
Here's tonight's lineup for the Red Sox (first pitch - 8:10 pm ET):
1) Pedroia, 2B 2) Bogaerts, SS 3) Ortiz, DH 4) Gomes, RF 5) Sizemore, LF 6) Pierzynski, C 7) Nava, 1B 8) Roberts, 3B 9) Bradley Jr., CF Buchholz, P
The White Sox (8-6) have lefty John Danks on the hill to face Boston. He is 1-0 with a 4.15 ERA in 13 innings pitched this season.
No ribeyes (RBIs) for X
Through 14 games (all starts), Bogaerts has yet to drive in a run. He was pretty much a unanimous preseason pick for AL Rookie of the Year, but that campaign hasn't gotten underway just yet.
Three's not good company
Last season, the Red Sox had five three-game losing streaks. This year, they have two such streaks in 14 games (h/t @Sean_McAdam). These streaks were avoided by clutch hitting, something the Red Sox have yet to have in 2014.
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