Miami at Boston
Where: Fenway Park, Boston
BOSTON – The Boston Red Sox are 48 games over .500 and own a 6 1/2-game lead over the New York Yankees in the American League East, but a bad stretch is making things a little more interesting with September approaching. The Red Sox will try to bounce back when they return home and host the Miami Marlins in the opener of a two-game interleague series Tuesday.
Boston leads the majors in runs (706), batting average (.268) and OPS (.793) but watched the offense go silent with a total of five runs while being swept for the first time this season in a three-game series at Tampa Bay over the weekend. “Sometimes you go through tough times,” infielder Eduardo Nunez told mlb.com. “Off-day (Monday) and start all over again. This happens in a long season. We know it’s not going to be easy all the way through. At some point you’re going to have tough times. It was a very tough week for us. Turn the page and keep going. We’re in first place for a reason.” The Marlins are in last place in the National League East but are not laying down and earned a split in their last two series against potential playoff teams the Yankees and the Atlanta Braves. Miami will try to continue that trend behind right-hander Jose Urena while the Red Sox send lefty Brian Johnson to the mound Tuesday.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, FS Florida (Miami), NESN (Boston)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Marlins RH Jose Urena (4-12, 4.50 ERA) vs. Red Sox LH Brian Johnson (4-3, 4.12)
Urena is coming off a six-game suspension for intentionally hitting Atlanta outfielder Ronald Acuna Jr. with a pitch and is working for the first time since tossing a gem against Washington on Aug. 19. The Dominican Republic native scattered one run and two hits across nine innings in his first career complete game and earned the win. Urena was sharp against Boston on April 3, when he allowed one run in seven innings without factoring in the decision.
Johnson was solid in his last two starts but is not working deep into games as he keeps a rotation spot warm for one of the team’s injured starters. The Florida native allowed three runs and five hits in 4 1/3 innings against Cleveland on Wednesday but did not factor in the decision in a game the Red Sox went onto win. Johnson made his first start of the season at Miami on April 2 and yielded one run in six frames to pick up a win.
1. Marlins 2B Starlin Castro is 3-for-19 in six games since going 5-for-6 against Washington on Aug. 19.
2. Red Sox RF Mookie Betts is 7-for-40 over the last 10 games, dropping his batting average from .352 to .336
3. Boston LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (ankle) is scheduled to throw six innings in a rehab game for Double-A Portland on Monday.