The Boston Red Sox find themselves 2 1/2 games behind the New York Yankees for the AL East Division as they head to Yankee Stadium for this weekends four game series. The first game is scheduled for tonight at 7:05 pm with John Smoltz and Joba Chamberlain as the projected starters. Joba Chamberlin is 3-0 with a 0.83 ERA in his three starts since the All-Star break. Collectively the Yankees have been on a tear since then, winning 14 of their last 19 games. Despite their recent success New York still feels the most pressure going into this series, due to the fact that they are 0-8 against their rival opponent Red Sox.
Boston is coming off two disappointing losses at Tampa Bay, but manager Terry Francona states that it isn’t the best idea to be concerned. “If we’re concerned about this weekend, I don’t know if we’re going to put our best foot forward [Thursday],” Francona said. “We’re going in and playing a team that probably feels really good about themselves. I think we’re looking forward to it, like we always do.” Even though the Rays series wasn’t what we had hoped for, we can still take in many positives going into this crucial series.
Victor Martinez has been more than comfortable during his short time in a Boston uniform, going 10-for-21 from the plate with two doubles and a homer. Martinez and the rest of the Sox line up will have to step up, knowing Jason Bay will be out for the first two games after aggravating his hamstring earlier this week. Boston should be excited about the rotation going into the series. Josh Beckett is scheduled for game two and Clay Buchholz and John Lester will take on games three and four. Get ready for what should be a thrilling preview for a possible playoff series later this year.
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