|BOSTON ( WEBSTER )|
BALTIMORE ( TILLMAN )
|967||BOSTON||+150||Ov 8.5,-105||+140||Ov 8.5,-105|
|968||BALTIMORE||-160||Un 8.5,-115||-150||Un 8.5,-115|
|vs Right-handed Starters||64-42||+13.4||52-50||5.4||0.278||0.347||4.2||0.248||0.313|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||-0.2||5-2||6.9||0.304||0.351||4.4||0.278||0.337|
|vs Right-handed Starters||57-50||+2.4||52-50||4.8||0.262||0.315||4.4||0.259||0.320|
|Past 7 Games||3-4||-1.7||4-3||4.0||0.275||0.327||5.0||0.296||0.348|
|9/15/2013||BUCHHOLZ(R)||NY YANKEES||NOVA(R)||9-2||W||-155||8.5 un||O||11||8||1||5||6||0|
|9/24/2013||LACKEY(R)||@ COLORADO||CHATWOOD(R)||3-8||L||-150||10 ov||O||7||6||0||11||7||2|
|9/25/2013||PEAVY(R)||@ COLORADO||CHACIN(R)||15-5||W||-120||10 ov||O||16||7||0||10||6||1|
|9/27/2013||BUCHHOLZ(R)||@ BALTIMORE||FELDMAN(R)||12-3||W||-130||7.5 ov||O||16||6||0||8||5||0|
|9/28/2013||LESTER(L)||@ BALTIMORE||CHEN(L)||5-6||L||-125||8 un||O||14||9||0||12||7||1|
|9/29/2013||LACKEY(R)||@ BALTIMORE||TILLMAN(R)|| |
|9/15/2013||GONZALEZ(R)||@ TORONTO||BUEHRLE(L)||3-1||W||-120||9 un||U||6||8||0||10||11||1|
|9/17/2013||FELDMAN(R)||@ BOSTON||DEMPSTER(R)||3-2||W||105||8.5 ev||U||6||6||3||3||7||0|
|9/18/2013||CHEN(L)||@ BOSTON||PEAVY(R)||5-3||W||130||8.5 un||U||10||7||0||15||9||0|
|9/19/2013||TILLMAN(R)||@ BOSTON||LACKEY(R)||1-3||L||120||8.5 un||U||2||3||0||7||6||0|
|9/20/2013||HAMMEL(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||PRICE(L)||4-5||L||170||7.5 un||O||12||13||1||14||16||0|
|9/21/2013||GONZALEZ(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||COBB(R)||1-5||L||135||7.5 un||U||5||5||1||7||6||0|
|9/22/2013||FELDMAN(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||ROMERO(L)||1-3||L||-115||7.5 ov||U||3||5||0||6||5||1|
|9/23/2013||CHEN(L)||@ TAMPA BAY||ARCHER(R)||4-5||L||115||7 ov||O||10||8||0||9||8||0|
|BOSTON: HITTING: OF JACOBY ELLSBURY's 2011 breakout was no fluke. He has real power to complement his elite speed. 2B DUSTIN PEDROIA bounced back from a slow start to finish with career highs in HR and RBI. He benefits from hitting behind Ellsbury. 3B KEVIN YOUKILIS is a huge injury risk. His best seasons are behind him. 1B ADRIAN GONZALEZ wasted no time winning over Boston fans last year, and should hit even more HR in 2012. DH DAVID ORTIZ has put together two straight impressive years after being left for dead in 2009. 2011 Super Bust OF CARL CRAWFORD will bounce back, just not as much as most experts think. Most of the catcher duties will go to C JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA, with C KELLY SHOPPACH getting ABs against lefties. Right field will be filled by former Giants playoff hero CODY ROSS. SS NICK PUNTO replaces Marco Scutaro, who is now in Colorado. 3B MIKE AVILES is a solid hitter with the defensive flexibility to end up with semi-regular ABs. |
STARTING PITCHING: JON LESTER seems to have leveled off as a very good pitcher instead of ascending into an elite class. He lost some speed on his pitches and got hit a little harder in 2011. Coming off the best season of his up-and-down career, JOSH BECKETT's numbers are bound to regress a bit in 2012. Back problems limited CLAY BUCHHOLZ last season, and he lost some of the zip on his fastball. He'll tally a low ERA and 15+ wins if he can stay healthy. ALFREDO ACEVES was outstanding out of the bullpen last year, and will compete for a rotation spot this year. He was a starter for years in the Mexican League and the minors. Former setup man DANIEL BARD is being converted to a starter, but he may wind up back in the bullpen later on. After Tommy John surgeries, DAISUKE MATSUZAKA is due to return around July, while JOHN LACKEY won't be back until 2013.
RELIEF PITCHING: ANDREW BAILEY was a acquired from Oakland in December for a heap of prospects. He's one of the best closers in baseball, and may even be an upgrade from departed Jonathan Papelbon in the ninth. Time will tell how he'll handle the increased scrutiny of playing in Boston. Coming over in a trade for infielder Jed Lowrie, MARK MELANCON was excellent as a closer last season in Houston and should be Bailey's main set-up man in the eighth inning. BOBBY JENKS has ninth-inning experience, but he will be out at least two months coming off a pulmonary embolism.
|BALTIMORE: HITTING: The leadoff spot is 2B BRIAN ROBERTS' if he can stay on the field. His recent injury history is very troubling, though his talent makes him a risk worth taking. 2B ROBERT ANDINO and 2B RYAN ADAMS would compete for time if Roberts is out. The O's best hitter last year was arguably SS J.J. HARDY. He was healthy for the first time in years and flexed his legit 30-HR power. If Roberts and Hardy stay healthy, OF NICK MARKAKIS will likely hit third and see an increase in RBI chances. OF ADAM JONES seems to have the highest ceiling of any Baltimore hitter. 3B MARK REYNOLDS will probably end up at 1B. His horrendous average cancels out some of his 40-HR potential. OF NOLAN REIMOLD revived his MLB career with an impressive end of the season. He's got a shot to start in left. 1B CHRIS DAVIS is a candidate to start at first, third or DH as sort of a Junior Mark Reynolds. C MATT WIETERS is already one of the best two-way backstops in baseball at age 25. |
STARTING PITCHING: WEI-YIN CHEN pitched well enough in Japan (2.48 ERA, 1.06 WHIP in past four seasons) to become the de-facto ace of this horrible pitching staff. JAKE ARRIETA is a mediocre talent, but is good enough to secure a spot as a Baltimore starter. JASON HAMMEL hopes the switch from Coors Field will help lower his career ERA of 4.99. The highest-risk, highest-potential O's pitcher may be BRIAN MATUSZ. His 2011 line is frightening (10.69 ERA, 2.11 WHIP), but he has the raw skills and pitch repertoire to turn it around. TOMMY HUNTER came over from Texas midseason and should round out the rotation.
RELIEF PITCHING: There was talk of JIM JOHNSON being converted into a starter, but he'll open the season as the team's closer. Johnson established himself as the O's best option to close after going 7-for-7 in that role last September. KEVIN GREGG would step in as the ninth-inning man if Johnson falters. He was unstable in that role last year. Gregg is a trade candidate this midseason, in which case he'd probably end up a set-up man elsewhere. Flame-throwing MATT LINDSTROM is a darkhorse for saves. He saved 23 games for Houston in 2010 before being used as a set-up man in Colorado last year. TSUYOSHI WADA brings his finesse game from Japan. He's a heady hurler who hides the ball well, but he's in for a rude awakening in the A.L. East. BRAD BERGESEN and CHRIS JAKUBAUSKAS are long relievers who may get bumped into the rotation if the young Baltimore SPs struggle again.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER AL PREVIEW (BOSTON-BALTIMORE) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Red Sox-Orioles Preview* =========================
By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO STATS Writer
Boston (97-63) at Baltimore (83-77), 1:35 p.m. EDT
The Boston Red Sox own the best record in baseball, and they're hitting very well ahead of the postseason.
A victory in the regular-season finale Sunday over the Baltimore Orioles could provide even more momentum.
Boston (97-64) is bidding to win 98 games for the first time since 2004, when it went on to win the World Series for the first time since 1918.
The Red Sox were denied in their first attempt at matching that mark, losing 6-5 on Saturday.
That result, however, was rendered somewhat meaningless because Boston had already secured home-field advantage throughout the playoffs with Oakland's loss to Seattle earlier in the day. The Red Sox will face the wild-card winner - Cleveland, Tampa Bay or Texas - in Game 1 of the AL division series at Fenway Park on Friday.
"To know going into the postseason that for every series we go into, being able to play in front of Fenway fans and how comfortable and successful we've been at home, this is a good thing," manager John Farrell said.
Farrell surely thinks Boston's recent dominance at the plate is a good thing. His team is batting .371 with 32 runs and six homers in the last three games. Daniel Nava has been a catalyst, going 8 for 14 (.571) with a home run, three RBIs and five runs.
The outfielder was 4 for 4 Saturday, raising his career average against the Orioles (84-77) to .333.
Scheduled starter John Lackey (10-13, 3.52 ERA) tries to conclude his first season after Tommy John surgery in strong fashion.
The right-hander's best performance since returning may have been a two-hitter in a 3-1 win over Baltimore on Sept. 19. He struck out eight, while the only run he allowed coming on a seventh-inning homer by Adam Jones.
Lackey wasn't nearly that sharp five days later at Colorado, giving up four runs and three homers in six innings of an 8-3 loss.
Still, he's focused on being a factor in the postseason.
"I'm good to go," Lackey said. "Feel good."
Chris Tillman (16-7, 3.62) starts for the Orioles looking to wrap up his outstanding season with his first win in four starts. The right-hander ranks among the AL leaders in wins with a total that matches that of his previous four years.
Tillman, though, has been unable to earn his 17th win, going 0-2 with a 3.27 ERA in his last three starts while being backed by six total runs.
His most recent defeat came opposite Lackey on Sept. 19, when he allowed three runs - all in the second - with eight strikeouts in seven innings.
Unlike Lackey, Tillman followed that up with an impressive performance Tuesday, yielding one run and fanning nine in seven innings of a 3-2 loss in 10 to Toronto.
He's 4-1 with a 1.55 ERA over his last seven starts versus Boston, allowing only an unearned run in 21 innings while winning all three at home over that span.
Tillman has limited Nava to 4 for 17 (.235) with seven strikeouts. David Ortiz (0 for 13), Will Middlebrooks (0 for 11) and Jarrod Saltalamacchia (2 for 19) also have struggled in this matchup.
Baltimore slugger Chris Davis is 11 for 30 (.367) with two homers and three doubles lifetime against Lackey. He enters the season's final day with a major league-leading 138 RBIs, one ahead of Detroit's Miguel Cabrera.
|Last Updated: 9/21/2014 7:07:33 AM EST|