Red Sox Vs. Rays Lineup: Sox Tab Jon Lester To Stop Losing Streak

The Red Sox are in perhaps the closest thing to a must-win situation they've had yet this year, facing down a possible sweep at the hands of the Tampa Bay Rays that could turn a seemingly locked-up wild card position suddenly vulnerable.

To avoid that nightmare scenario, the Sox will have to snap a four-game losing streak which has seen them drop games in blowouts and heartbreakers alike. If there's one man who can come through for them, it will be the one who last won for the Sox: Jon Lester.

It won't matter how well Lester pitches, of course, if the Sox' lineup can't score any runs. The good news is that this hasn't really been the biggest problem of late.

Boston Red Sox (85-60)

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
  2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  3. Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
  4. David Ortiz, DH
  5. Josh Reddick, RF
  6. Carl Crawford, LF
  7. Jason Varitek, C
  8. Marco Scutaro, SS
  9. Mike Aviles, 3B

The Rays won't have the most threatening looking lineup of the series-to-date given the lefty on the mound.

Tampa Bay Rays (80-64)

  1. Desmond Jennings, LF
  2. B.J. Upton, CF
  3. Evan Longoria, 3B
  4. Ben Zobrist, 2B
  5. Johnny Damon, DH
  6. Sean Rodriguez, SS
  7. Casey Kotchman, 1B
  8. Jose Lobaton, C
  9. Brandon Guyer, RF

Pitching Matchup: Jon Lester (15-6, 2.93 ERA) vs. James Shields (14-10, 2.77 ERA)

If there was going to be a game for the fate of potentially two separate seasons, this is a pretty appropriate pitching matchup. Ace vs. ace, with each man in top form. Jon Lester has gone five straight starts allowing at most one earned run--a streak which started against the Rays--and is fresh off an 11-strikeout domination of the Toronto Blue Jays that earned the Sox their last victory.

Shields, on the other hand, has only thrown 26 innings of two-run ball in his last three outings. Mixed in with his dominant starts over the last couple of months, however, are a few disaster starts. He seems to be good for one or two a month--sort of a higher peaks, but more frequent depths situation compared to Lester. He could just be due for another one. 

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SB Nation Boston

You must be a member of SB Nation Boston to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Boston. You should read them.

Join SB Nation Boston

You must be a member of SB Nation Boston to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Boston. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.