American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, April 16th
(All times Eastern)
Tampa Bay Rays (4-5) at Boston Red Sox (4-5), 11:05 a.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Tampa Bay - James Shields (1-0, 5.54)
Boston - Daniel Bard (0-1, 9.00)
(Sports Network) - The Boston Red Sox eye a four-game sweep of the Tampa Bay
Rays today when they wrap up the set with an early Patriots' Day start at
Patriots' Day is a holiday in Massachusetts and Maine that celebrates the
anniversary of Paul Revere's ride and the battles of Lexington and Concord in
1775. The day will also be marked by the 116th running of the Boston Marathon.
Boston's bats have come alive this weekend, as it has outscored the Rays 31-11
through the first three games. On Sunday, David Ortiz went 3-for-4 with two
runs scored and an RBI, while Cody Ross added a three-run home run in the Red
Sox's 6-4 win.
"When you play a Tampa team that is touted to win 100 games, it feels pretty
good to come out fighting like we did," Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said.
Vicente Padilla (1-0) tossed 1 2/3 frames of one-hit ball to earn the win.
Carlos Pena smacked a two-run double for the Rays, who were 3-for-14 with
runners in scoring position and left 10 men on base.
Matt Moore (0-1) allowed six runs on eight hits and four walks in 6 1/3
innings for Tampa Bay, which has lost four straight contests and five of six.
Heading to the hill for the Red Sox today will be righty Daniel Bard, who
struggled in his first start since 2007 on Tuesday in Toronto. The former
reliever was hit for five runs and eight hits in five innings of that one to
get the loss. Two of the runs, though, came after he had left the game.
"Just they hit it where we weren't," Bard said. "I just kind of try to focus
on how it felt and how the ball was coming out of my hand, which I felt was
really good, and try to ignore the bad results."
Although this will be his first start against the Rays, Bard has faced them 18
times out of the pen and has pitched to a 1.00 ERA in those outings, allowing
just two earned runs in 18 innings.
Tampa, meanwhile, will counter with righty James Shields, who picked up his
first win his last time out. After a no-decision against the New York Yankees
on Opening Day, Shields bounced back to beat the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday,
as he held them to two runs and six hits in eight innings.
"If I just execute my pitches and try to get the first out of every inning,
I'll be good," Shields said. "If you can get ahead of these guys and really be
methodical with your pitches and put guys away early, I think you're going to
Shields is 7-12 lifetime versus the Red Sox with a 4.61 ERA in 21 games.
Boston, which was a mere 6-12 against the Rays last season, has won seven of
its last eight Patriots' Day contests and nine of its last 11 dating back to
The Red Sox have been scheduled to play at home on Patriots' Day every year
04/16 10:19:04 ET