Having managed to salvage a winning record on their road trip with a sweep of the Houston Astros, the Sox are all-too-ready to get back to Fenway Park and the American League. That means no pitchers batting, with David Ortiz and Adrian Gonzalez both in the lineup and neither of them in right field.
They'll be welcomed back into the fold by the Toronto Blue Jays who just went 2-4 in their homestand against the same teams the Red Sox went 2-4 against on the road: the Phillies and Pirates.Still, they finished on a strong note, breaking Cliff Lee's shutout streak by scoring seven runs off him on Sunday.
The question will be whether a return to the American League means a return to high-scoring, or if the magic of the Houston Astros' bullpen will be fleeting. David Ortiz is hitless in his last 19 at bats, and even Adrian Gonzalez has fallen off his usual pace. Which is not to mention the ridiculous number of double play balls and men left on base over the last two weeks. Still, they're not up against the most impressive lineup of starters aside from Ricky Romero in the final game of the series, and there's a lot to be said for sheer familiarity.
Boston Red Sox (49-34) vs. Toronto Blue Jays (41-44)
Monday, July 4, 1:35 p.m.
John Lackey (5-7, 6.81 ERA) vs. Brandon Morrow (4-4, 4.56 ERA)
Tuesday, July 5, 7:10 p.m.
Jon Lester (10-4, 3.43 ERA) vs. Brett Cecil (1-3, 7.24 ERA)
Wednesday, July 6, 7:10 p.m.
Tim Wakefield (4-3, 4.82 ERA) vs. Ricky Romero (7-7, 2.75 ERA)