American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, June 21st
(All times eastern)
Boston Red Sox (44-31) at Detroit Tigers (40-31), 7:08 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Boston - Jon Lester (6-4, 4.37)
Detroit - Doug Fister (6-4, 3.21)
(Sports Network) - Jon Lester eyes his first win in seven starts on Friday
when the Boston Red Sox continue their four-game series with the Detroit
Tigers at Comerica Park.
After starting the year by winning six straight decisions Lester has now lost
his last four and has pitched to a 7.20 ERA in that six-start span. That trend
could continue on Friday, as he is 0-2 in five starts versus the Tigers with a
Lester lost to Baltimore on Sunday, as he allowed five runs and nine hits in
five innings. However, he did strike out eight batters without issuing a walk
after handing out seven free passes in his previous start.
"I thought the work he did leading up to the start in Baltimore was a
positive," Boston manager John Farrell said. "It's still going to come down to
relentless execution, regardless of if it's a two-strike count, whether it's
two outs in a given inning, whether it's Jon Lester or anybody else. That's
the outcome you're looking for each time a guy walks to the mound. The numbers
on the linescore are what they were from the last outing, but still, it was a
step in the right way."
Getting the call for the Tigers on Friday will be righty Doug Fister, who lost
a no-hit bid in the sixth inning of his last start in Minnesota. Fister won
for the first time in six starts on Sunday against the Twins, as he allowed
two runs and two hits in 7 2/3 innings to run his record to 6-4, while
lowering his ERA to 3.21.
"He was terrific," manager Jim Leyland said. "He did a great job of making
them miss the ball."
Fister is just 1-3 lifetime against the BoSox with a 4.09 ERA in six starts.
Detroit jumped out first in this matchup of division leaders in dramatic
fashion on Thursday, as Jhonny Peralta's two-run blast in the bottom of the
ninth inning carried the Tigers to a 4-3 win. Torii Hunter contributed a two-
run hit for the Tigers, who snapped a two-game slide.
Andrew Bailey (3-1) entered with a 3-2 lead, but issued a leadoff walk to
Victor Martinez and, after Don Kelly was inserted as a pinch runner, Peralta
launched a ball just over the wall in left to end the game.
"I see everybody at home plate, it's a good feeling, hitting a walkoff home
run," Peralta said. "It's the best that I can feel."
Drew Smyly (3-0) tossed two scoreless frames of relief, fanning four and
allowing just one hit.
David Ortiz homered and knocked in two runs for the Red Sox, who have dropped
two in a row.
"We're going to back him out of there right now and try to get him fixed, so
we'll look at some other internal options to close," Farrell said of Bailey,
who has blown a save in three of his last five appearances.
These teams split 10 meetings last season.
06/21 10:35:58 ET