Boston at Toronto
Where: Rogers Centre, Toronto, Ontario
TORONTO – The Boston Red Sox lead the major leagues with 124 runs scored heading into play on Monday and averaged 7.5 during an eight-game winning streak before going cold over the weekend in back-to-back losses to the Oakland Athletics. The Red Sox will try to find the offense again on Tuesday, when they continue the road trip by visiting the American League East-rival Toronto Blue Jays for the first time in 2018.
Boston was on the wrong end of Sean Manaea’s no-hitter on Saturday night and managed six hits in a 4-1 loss on Sunday that gave the team its first series loss of the young season. “Offensively, we feel very capable of scoring runs every night,” first-year Red Sox manager Alex Cora told reporters. “We think we’re a great offensive club. But this is going to happen. They’re not going to score seven, eight runs a night. But with the pitching staff that we have, they always will give us a chance to win a game.” The Blue Jays are enduring their own offensive slump and were outscored 14-2 in back-to-back losses to the New York Yankees to finish off the weekend. Toronto will try to string some hits together against red-hot right-hander Rick Porcello on Tuesday while countering with veteran lefty J.A. Happ.
TV: 7:07 p.m. ET, NESN (Boston), Sportsnet One (Toronto)
PITCHNG MATCHUP: Red Sox RH Rick Porcello (4-0, 1.40 ERA) vs. Blue Jays LH J.A. Happ (3-1, 4.50)
Porcello is much more like his Cy Young form of 2016 than his less-than-stellar form of 2017 so far this season, and he did not allow a run in either of his last two outings. The New Jersey native limited the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Angels to a total of eight hits without walking a batter in a combined 13 scoreless innings. Porcello went 2-2 in four starts against Toronto in 2017, surrendering 29 hits and six walks in 24 2/3 innings.
Happ is off to a strong start as well and earned the win in each of his last three outings. The 35-year-old owns 31 strikeouts in 22 total innings but has also been reached for five home runs – at least one in each of his four turns. Happ went 2-0 with a 1.90 ERA in four starts against Boston last season, yielding three home runs and striking out 16 in 23 2/3 total frames.
1. The Red Sox traded LHP Roenis Elias to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for a player to be named or cash considerations.
2. Blue Jays OF Teoscar Hernandez recorded multiple hits in four of his first eight games this season.
3. Boston OF/DH J.D. Martinez is 0-for-7 with five strikeouts over the last two games.