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Red Sox Vs. Yankees: Mike Aviles In Right Field Against CC Sabathia

It's a sobering thought, but were it not for some Jacoby Ellsbury heroics in the Cleveland series, the Sox could well be in the midst of a five-game losing streak. It's a slide which, after last night's frustrating loss to the Yankees, has left them in second place in the A.L. East for the first time in a month.

Now, to climb back into a tie, they'll have to put up enough offense on C.C. Sabathia to support John Lackey. A daunting task.

As-per-usual, the lineup looks a little weird with a lefty on the mound in opposition, but having Mike Aviles batting sixth in right field? That seems a bit much...

Boston Red Sox (68-43)

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

The Yankees will have Brett Gardner in the leadoff spot Saturday, with the rest of the lineup moving down to accommodate him. Eric Chavez will take over at third, with Francisco Cervelli getting the call behind the plate.

New York Yankees (69-42)

  1. Brett Gardner, LF
  2. Derek Jeter, SS
  3. Curtis Granderson, CF
  4. Mark Teixeira, 1B
  5. Robinson Cano, 2B
  6. Nick Swisher, RF
  7. Eric Chavez, 3B
  8. Jorge Posada, DH
  9. Francisco Cervelli, C

Pitching Matchup: John Lackey (9-8, 6.23 ERA) vs. CC Sabathia (16-5, 2.55 ERA)

This one could be summed up pretty quickly: mismatch.

Lackey had been on a roll before he faced the Cleveland Indians, but a couple of loud homers made it hard to remember anything more than his terrible start to the season, which included five innings against the Yankees during which he gave up six earned runs. In a way, this is the perfect opportunity for Lackey to prove that the Indians game was a fluke in post-DL Lackey's return to being effective, but it's also the perfect opportunity for him to crash and burn. He's rarely been good against hard-hitting teams like the Yankees in his career, so it's hard to expect that to change now.

The good news is that CC Sabathia has had some trouble against the Red Sox in his last couple outings, leaving in the seventh inning both times after allowing six earned runs. The bad news (well, in addition to the whole Lackey thing) is that Sabathia is on an unbelievable tear. He's gone seven innings or more in each of his last eight games, allowing a total of seven runs. He's been virtually unhittable, which doesn't sound too good for Boston.