Texas Rangers at Boston Red Sox
Where: Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts
BOSTON – Chris Sale has followed a three-start losing streak with a dominating stretch, allowing only four runs and striking out 56 batters while going 4-0 over his last five outings. Sale has allowed a scant 15 hits during that span and will look to give the Boston Red Sox a three-game sweep of the visiting Texas Rangers on Wednesday night.
Boston’s Andrew Benintendi is in second place entering the final day of balloting for the All-Star Final Vote, but he staked his claim with a pair of RBI doubles in Tuesday’s 8-4 victory. Jackie Bradley Jr. matched Benintendi with two RBI doubles as the Red Sox ran their winning streak to eight games to improve to a major league-best 64-29. Shin-Soo Choo walked twice to extend his on-base streak to 48 games, tying Cincinnati’s Joey Votto for the second-longest string since 2007. Texas’ Bartolo Colon, who opposes Sale, will surpass Dennis Martinez (245) as the all-time winningest Latin American pitcher with his next victory.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, ESPN, FS Southwest (Texas), NESN (Boston)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Rangers RH Bartolo Colon (5-6, 4.65 ERA) vs. Red Sox LH Chris Sale (9-4, 2.36)
Colon was denied in his bid to break Martinez’s record last time out at Detroit, taking the loss despite working a season-high eight innings and allowing three runs on five hits. The 45-year-old was taken deep in that loss to boost his total to 22 homers allowed, including four solo shots by the Red Sox in a 5-1 setback on May 4. Colon owns a 7-6 record with a 3.74 ERA at Fenway Park.
Sale reached double digits in strikeouts for the fourth consecutive outing, fanning 12 while giving up one run on five hits over six innings to win his third start in a row. It marked the eighth time this season that Sale has registered at least 10 strikeouts, including 12 in an overpowering win at Texas on May 6. Sale has flustered Choo, who is 2-for-26 with 12 strikeouts against him.
1. Boston has won five straight and 11 of its last 13 games against Texas.
2. Rangers DH Adrian Beltre is 5-for-16 versus Sale but only 4-for-28 with zero extra-base hits and RBIs in July.
3. Red Sox 2B Dustin Pedroia (knee), sidelined since May 29, will head to Arizona to continue his rehab program.