Texas Rangers at Boston Red Sox
When: 7:10 PM ET, Monday, June 10, 2019
Where: Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts
Preview for Digital Sports Desk by Gracenote
BOSTON – The defending champion Boston Red Sox breeze past teams at the bottom of the standings but can’t seem to find a way around the clubs they’ll be competing against for playoff spots. The Red Sox will get another crack at a team above them in the standings when they host the Texas Rangers tonight in the opener of a four-game series.
Boston swept the Kansas City Royals last week but lost recent series against the New York Yankees, Houston (twice) and Cleveland before dropping three of four at home to the Tampa Bay Rays over the weekend. “We’ve got to keep getting better,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora told reporters after a 6-1 loss to the Rays on Sunday. “Got to keep working. We’ve been saying it all along. Better with men in scoring position, execute out of the bullpen, everything.
Texas is playing well too and they’re coming in (Monday), a four-game series. We’ve got to do what we’re supposed to do and keep getting better.” The Rangers would be the second wild card in the American League if the season ended Sunday, leaving Boston out of the postseason, and come in winners of nine of their last 13 contests. Texas will get a stiff test on Monday from Red Sox ace Chris Sale while countering with veteran lefty Mike Minor.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, FS Southwest (Texas), NESN (Boston)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Rangers LH Mike Minor (5-4, 2.55 ERA) vs. Red Sox LH Chris Sale (2-7, 3.84)
Minor allowed three or fewer earned runs in each of his last eight outings and held the Baltimore Orioles scoreless on seven hits over 5 2/3 innings to earn a win on Wednesday. The 31-year-old did not complete more than six innings in any of his last six turns and needed 117 pitches to get through 5 2/3 frames against the Orioles. Minor went 1-1 in two starts against the Red Sox last season, with the loss coming in a start at Fenway Park on July 9 in which he was charged with two runs in 5 1/3 innings.
Sale was at the top of his game last time out, firing off a 102-pitch shutout at Kansas City on Wednesday in which he struck out 12, did not issue a walk and scattered three hits. The Florida native owns 110 strikeouts and 19 walks in 77 1/3 total innings and recorded double-digit strikeouts in seven of his last nine turns. Sale won both of his starts against Texas last season, allowing a total of one run in 14 innings while racking up 24 strikeouts.
- Red Sox DH J.D. Martinez (back) sat out the last four games and is day-to-day.
- Rangers 2B Rougned Odor went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and three RBIs on Sunday, matching his hit total from his previous five games and lifting his batting average to .177.
- Boston RHP Nathan Eovaldi, who is on the injured list following elbow surgery, is dealing with biceps tendinitis during his rehab.