Atlanta Braves at Boston
Where: Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts
BOSTON – The Boston Red Sox followed up a significant roster makeover with another win and will try for their eighth in a 10-game span when they continue a three-game interleague series with the visiting Atlanta Braves on Saturday. The Red Sox activated second baseman Dustin Pedroia from the disabled list Friday and made the somewhat surprising corresponding move of designating veteran first baseman Hanley Ramirez for assignment.
Hours later, four Boston hitters went deep in a 6-2 win in the series opener, including the major league-leading 17th home run for Mookie Betts. Pedroia, who was recovering from offseason knee surgery, did not appear in the contest but is expected to make his season debut Saturday. The Braves will start lefty Sean Newcomb, who hails from Middleboro, Mass., roughly 50 miles from Fenway Park, in Saturday’s tilt. The Red Sox counter with Drew Pomeranz, pitching for the first time in over a week.
TV: 1:05 p.m. ET, MLB Network, FS Southeast (Atlanta), NESN (Boston)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Braves LH Sean Newcomb (5-1, 2.39 ERA) vs. Red Sox LH Drew Pomeranz (1-2, 5.97)
Newcomb’s phenomenal run continued last Saturday against Miami, as he won his fourth straight start while allowing one run in six innings. It is the only run he has allowed in 25 innings during his four-game winning streak, during which opponents have managed only nine hits. The 24-year-old gave up seven runs on nine hits and five walks in 9 1/3 innings over his first two career interleague starts.
Pomeranz completed only four innings in each of his last two starts while giving up a total of eight runs (seven earned) and walking eight. He was saddled with the loss after a rocky outing against Baltimore on May 18 and then was pushed back in order to get in some side work during the week, which he hopes can yield a turnaround. “Getting real rotational,” Pomeranz told reporters of a mechanical issue he thinks he has solved. “It’s something exactly what I did last year, it’s something that I’ve struggled with.”
1. Braves RF Nick Markakis drove in both of his team’s runs in the opener and is 11-for-27 during a seven-game hitting streak.
2. Red Sox CF Jackie Bradley Jr. has three extra-base hits over his last five games after going 21 straight games without one.
3. Boston won 12 of the last 15 meetings.