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Red Sox Vs. Blue Jays Lineups: Kevin Youkilis Out After Monday Plunking

The Red Sox put together seven runs against the Blue Jays yesterday, but will be featuring a rather less impressive lineup against lefty Brett Cecil.

First, there's the presence of Darnell McDonald, who seems to have earned at least another week of playing time with his home run against the Astros. More importantly, though, Kevin Youkilis will sit after being hit by a pitch in Monday's series opener. Youkilis has been dealing with a foot injury for a while now, so a day off was probably in order anyways.

The result, unfortunately, is a rather ramshackle lineup which could spell trouble.

Boston Red Sox (49-35)

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
  2. Marco Scutaro, SS
  3. Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
  4. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  5. David Ortiz, DH
  6. Darnell McDonald, LF
  7. Jason Varitek, C
  8. J.D. Drew, RF
  9. Yamaico Navarro, 3B

If you can't tell just from that, the Blue Jays will be throwing a lefty tonight.

Toronto Blue Jays (42-44)

  1. Rajai Davis, CF
  2. Corey Patterson, LF
  3. Jose Bautista, 3B
  4. Adam Lind, 1B
  5. Yunel Escobar, SS
  6. Edwin Encarnacion, DH
  7. Travis Snider, RF
  8. J.P. Arencibia, C
  9. John McDonald, 2B

Pitching Matchup: Jon Lester (10-4, 3.43 ERA) vs. Brett Cecil (1-3, 7.24 ERA)

Jon Lester extended his streak of quality starts to five straight Thursday against the Phillies, playing the stopper for the Red Sox by providing seven scoreless innings en route to a 5-2 win. Lester has already faced the Jays three times this year, with varied results. Lester went 14 innings, allowing just two total earned runs in two of those starts, and gave up five earned runs against the Jays in five innings back on May 10. That poor start was the beginning of a streak of three subpar efforts from Lester, however, which suggests that he wasn't entirely right at the time.

Brett Cecil hasn't been entirely right in a while, however. Before his most recent game, when he allowed six runs in as many innings, Cecil had spent much of the year in Triple-A, accruing a 5.26 ERA in 12 games. Cecil's tendency to walk batters has been made all the much worse by his even greater tendency towards the fly ball and, as a result, the home run. One of his few starts in the majors earlier this year did come against the Red Sox, during which he allowed three earned runs in six innings, giving up only two hits--both of them homers.

For more Boston Red Sox coverage, visit our team page and blog, Over The Monster.