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Red Sox Vs. Rays Lineup: Sox Seek Sweep Without Kevin Youkilis

The Red Sox will go for a Patriots' Day sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays Monday, sending Daniel Bard to the mound for his second career start against the Tampa Bay Rays and their ace James Shields. First pitch is at 11:05 a.m. EST, with broadcasts on NESN and WEEI.

Meanwhile, however, the plot surrounding Bobby Valentine and Kevin Youkilis thickens, as the Red Sox' third baseman is taking a seat just one day after his manager questioned his investment in the game. We could take this as a sign that the rift is growing, or we could take it to mean that Kevin Youkilis has a .522 career OPS against James Shields in some 52 attempts.

I'm going to go with the second one.

Nick Punto will take over at third base, hopefully solidifying the infield defense that so failed Daniel Bard in his first time out. Cody Ross, riding a recent power surge, moves up to fifth in the lineup, though he's not nearly so impressive against right-handed pitchers like Shields. The bottom of the lineup...it's not pretty.

Boston Red Sox (4-5)

  1. Mike Aviles, SS
  2. Dustin Pedroia, CF
  3. Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
  4. David Ortiz, DH
  5. Cody Ross, CF
  6. Ryan Sweeney, RF
  7. Nick Punto, 3B
  8. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
  9. Darnell McDonald, LF
Tampa Bay Rays
  1. Desmond Jennings, CF
  2. Carlos Pena, 1B
  3. Evan Longoria, 3B
  4. Luke Scott, DH
  5. Ben Zobrist, RF
  6. Matt Joyce, LF
  7. Jeff Keppinger, 2B
  8. Jose Molina, C
  9. Sean Rodriguez, SS

Next Game

Tampa Bay Rays
@ Boston Red Sox

Monday, Apr 16, 2012, 11:05 AM EDT
Fenway Park

James Shields vs Daniel Bard

Partly cloudy. Winds blowing out to left field at 5-10 m.p.h. Game time temperature around 75.

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