(Sports Network) - Josh Beckett makes his second start since returning from the disabled list this afternoon when the Boston Red Sox try to complete a three-game sweep against the LA Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium.
Boston, which was swept by Anaheim in last year's ALDS, already swept a four- game set from the Angels in Fenway earlier in the year and is 6-0 against them this season while also winning eight of the last nine meetings overall.
Beckett, who is 1-1 with a 6.66 earned run average on the year, returned on Friday after missing two months with a back injury, but did not get a decision in Seattle, as he allowed a run and five hits in 5 2/3 innings of his team's 2-1 win.
"Oh man, that was so encouraging," said Red Sox manager Terry Francona of Beckett's impressive return. "The ball came out of his hand good. He threw his breaking ball really well, and that's what he had really wanted to spend the majority of his time on in the bullpen session with [pitching coach] John [Farrell], and it was crisp."
Beckett has faced the Angels eight times and is 2-3 with a 4.13 ERA.
The Angels, meanwhile, will counter with righty Joel Pineiro, who lost for the first time in eight decisions last Wednesday in New York. The Yankees reached him for six runs and 11 hits in six innings in that one, dropping Pineiro to 10-7 on the year to go along with a 4.18 ERA.
Pineiro lost to the Red Sox earlier in the season and is 3-6 lifetime versus them with a 5.94 ERA.
Lackey (10-5), who pitched for the Angels for his entire eight-year career before inking a free agent contract with Boston in the offseason, allowed two runs on seven hits for the Red Sox, who have won two straight games and four of six overall.
Bobby Abreu hit a solo home run and finished with two RBI for the struggling Angels, who have dropped three straight and six of their last seven games.
Jered Weaver started on the hill for Los Angeles and was very strong through six scoreless innings, but suffered the loss. Weaver (9-7) exited after seven full frames and ended with a line that showed two runs allowed on six hits with eight strikeouts.
The Red Sox swept a four-game home set over the Angels from May 3-6, but have lost seven of their last 11 in Anaheim.