MLB

Wed, Sep 4, 2013 - 7:10 PM ET
 

Tigers-Red Sox Preview

Share This Story

   
 

Miguel Cabrera's return to the lineup did little to ignite Detroit's offense, and now the Tigers will be without their slugger again.

The Boston Red Sox hope getting Jacoby Ellsbury back at the top of their batting order can provide a spark.

The Tigers and Red Sox meet Wednesday night at Fenway Park to conclude a series between baseball's top two offenses that has been dominated by pitchers.

After dropping Monday's opener 3-0, Boston (83-57) retook a 1 1/2-game lead over Detroit (81-58) for the AL's best record with a 2-1 victory Tuesday. The teams have combined for 29 hits in 129 at-bats for a .225 average - a feeble display for these two potent offenses.

Tuesday's game, however, had a stellar pitching matchup. Jon Lester outdueled Max Scherzer, denying him a chance to become the second pitcher to open a season with a 20-1 record.

"We've got two of the top teams in the American League. We've got great pitchers on both sides going at it. This is what's going to happen,'' Scherzer said.

The game featured the return of Cabrera, who missed three contests with abdominal and groin problems, but Cabrera wasn't in the starting lineup for Wednesday's contest. Manager Jim Leyland told reporters "he's a little sore'' before the lineup was posted in the locker room.

The Red Sox expect Ellsbury to return after he sat out Tuesday because of a sore left thumb. Manager John Farrell had said his leadoff hitter is likely going to have to deal with the soreness for the remainder of the season, and he'll be given occasional days off to rest.

"Everyday players at this time of the year are going to be dealing with certain things," Farrell told the Red Sox's official website. "His happens to be in his left hand."

Ellsbury has played a big part in Boston's success, batting .379 with four stolen bases and eight runs in the last seven games, and the club is 15-3 when he scores a run since the All-Star break.

Getting him back for the finale seems like a good plan considering he has routinely frustrated scheduled starter Rick Porcello, going 6 for 7 with a homer and double.

Porcello (11-7, 4.44 ERA) allowed two runs and five hits in 5 2-3 innings in Friday's 7-2 win over Cleveland. It was the 10th time in 11 starts the right-hander yielded three runs or less.

Porcello has been at his best on the road, going 4-0 with a 2.53 ERA in his last five outings away from Detroit.

He has struggled in his last two starts against the Red Sox, posting a 10.38 ERA, but has yet to face them in 2013.

Boston's turns to Ryan Dempster (7-9, 4.75), which could help both team's offenses come around.

Dempster has a 6.45 ERA in his last eight starts, but the Red Sox have won seven of them, backing the right-hander with an average of 6.9 runs of support.

Dempster pitched well enough to win on his own against the Chicago White Sox on Friday, permitting three runs and five hits in 6 1-3 innings of a 4-3 victory. It was his first start following a five-game suspension for hitting Alex Rodriguez with a pitch on Aug. 18.

"I'm glad I could just slide in and do a little bit of my part,'' he said

Dempster isn't too familiar with the Tigers, against whom he has not started since 2002 and faced since 2006.

Torii Hunter, though, is 6 for 9 lifetime against him, but 4 for 21 (.190) with no walks in his last five games.

Tagged: Red Sox, Tigers, Ryan Dempster, Miguel Cabrera, Jacoby Ellsbury, Rick Porcello

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



MLB Videos

Reds open series vs. Cubs with win Posted: Apr 18, 2014
Jonathan Broxton on settling into the season, how his elbow is feeling and more ...

Lester pitches 8 sharp innings in win over White Sox Posted: Apr 18, 2014
Jon Lester comments on Boston's 3-1 win over Chicago.

Gallardo: I was overthrowing Posted: Apr 18, 2014
Yovani Gallardo reacts to his performance against the Pirates.

SimLeague Baseball - Simulation Baseball Game

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike New York Yankees Practice T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Yankees/browse/featuredproduct/606363/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_606000/ff_606363_xl.jpg&w=100 27.95 Nike New York Yankees Practice T-Shirt - Ash
    Majestic Detroit Tigers 2012 MLB American League Champions Clubhouse Locker Room T-Shirt - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Detroit_Tigers/browse/featuredproduct/1064043/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1064000/ff_1064043_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Majestic Detroit Tigers 2012 MLB American League Champions Clubhouse Locker Room..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room T-Shirt - Gray http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067359/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067359_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker R..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room Pullover Hoodie - Steel http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067382/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067382_xl.jpg&w=100 54.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker R..
    New Era San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room 39THIRTY Flex Hat - Charcoal/Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067785/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067785_xl.jpg&w=100 31.95 New Era San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Ro..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Glory T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1068294/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1068000/ff_1068294_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Glory T-Shirt - Bl..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Batting Practice Performance Jersey - Black/Orange http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1068787/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1068000/ff_1068787_xl.jpg&w=100 94.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Batting Practice P..