The Rays are readying to take the field under blue skies at Fenway Park, in Boston. Here’s to hope that the mouth of Red Sox starting pitcher, John Lackey, is fully agape in today’s 1:35 game. After all, we all know that Lackey’s fastball velocity drops by 5 MPH when his mouth is open.
After yesterdays loss and win, the Rays have neither made up or lost any ground thus far on this road trip, and find themselves 9.0 games behind the second place Red Sox and just as many games out in the wildcard race.
It’s worth noting that by winning his seventh straight decision, Jeff Niemann has tied the team record for consecutive games won by a Rays starting pitcher. It’s also worth noting that it was the first time in the majors, since 1993, that a team has thrown two complete games in one day. Kudos go out to both”Complete Game” James Shields and Jeff Niemann on two excellent starts. Perhaps if the Rays mustered up some offense in game one, Shields three hit gem (which found him throwing seven perfect innings after giving up three runs in the second) wouldn’t have been for naught.
The Rays (65-56)
Jennings (LF), Damon (DH), Longoria (3B), Zobrist (2B), Kotchman (1B), Upton (CF), Joyce (RF), Brignac (SS), Shoppach (C)
Red Sox (74-47)
Ellsbury (CF), Pedroia (2B), Gonzalez (DH), Youkilis (1B), Lowrie (3B), McDonald (RF), Crawford (LF), Saltalamacchia (C), Aviles (SS)
David Price (10-10, 3.76 ERA) will try to get his 11th win against John Lackey (11-8, 6.13 ERA).