|Saturday’s Red Sox-White Sox matchups: Jon Lester vs. Jake Peavy||04.28.12 at 9:24 am ET|
After starting the week with a 4-10 record, the Red Sox enter Saturday afternoon’s game against the White Sox with a chance to reach the .500 mark thanks to a five-game win streak. The matinee game has the potential to be a pitching duel, as Boston will send out ace Jon Lester on Saturday to face White Sox ace Jake Peavy.
Lester is searching for his first win of the season, as he is 0-2 through his four starts and has lost five consecutive decisions dating back to Sept. 11 of last season. The left-hander did not earn a decision in his most recent start, a 6-5 Red Sox win over the Twins, but he gave Boston a chance to win by limiting the Twins to five runs on six hits through seven innings of work.
Lester has a winning record in his career at U.S. Cellular Field. He posted a 4.50 ERA through five starts and owns a 3-2 record in Chicago. Lester’s last outing against the White Sox was a good one, as he tossed eight innings of two-run baseball in a 10-2 Red Sox win on July 30, 2011.
Paul Konerko and A.J. Pierzynski have both hit well against Lester in their careers. Konerko, who is 4-for-8 through the first two games of this series and hit a home run off Daniel Bard Friday, has a .389 career average against Lester with three home runs and six RBIs. Pierzynski hits Lester at a .364 clip and has a double and three RBIs in his career against him.
While Lester enters the game looking to reverse his early-season struggles, Peavy will make the start hoping to improve on his perfect 3-0 record. Peavy’s three-game win streak to start the season is tied for the longest season-opening win streak of his career, as he also won his first three decisions in 2008 while pitching for the Padres.
In his most recent start, Peavy tossed a complete-game shutout in a 4-0 win over the Athletics. Peavy allowed just three hits through his nine innings of work and lowered his ERA to 1.88, the second-best mark among American League pitchers.
Peavy has made just two career starts against the Red Sox and earned a 1-1 record with a 4.50 ERA in those games. The one win came in his most recent start against the Red Sox, a 7-3 Chicago victory back on May 30, 2011. Peavy allowed three runs on six hits in that outing while striking out just two batters through seven innings.
None of the Red Sox have more than nine career at-bats against Peavy. Recent acquisition Marlon Byrd has the most experience against Peavy, as he faced him nine times. Most of those at-bats came while both Peavy and Byrd were in the National League, and Byrd is 2-for-8 against Peavy with a double and two strikeouts. David Ortiz hits Peavy best of any Red Sox player, as he is 3-for-6 against Peavy with one RBI.
Red Sox vs. Peavy (RHP)
Marlon Byrd (9 plate appearances): .250 BA/.333 OBP/.375 SLG, 1 double, 2 strikeouts
David Ortiz (6): .500 BA/.500 OBP/.500 SLG, 1 RBI, 1 strikeout
Mike Aviles (4): .500 BA/.500 OBP/.500 SLG, 2 singles
Adrian Gonzalez (3): .667 BA/.667 OBP/1.667 SLG, 1 home run, 1 RBI
Dustin Pedroia (3): .333 BA/.333 OBP/.333 SLG, 2 RBI
Cody Ross (3): .500 BA/.667 OBP/2.000 SLG, 1 home run, 3 RBIs, 1 walk
Jarrod Saltalamacchia (3): .000 BA/.333 OBP/.000 SLG
Kevin Youkilis (3): .000 BA/.000 OBP/.000 SLG
Nick Punto (1): .000 BA/.000 OBP/.000 SLG, 1 strikeout
White Sox vs. Lester (LHP)
Alex Rios (27 plate appearances): .242 BA/.324 OBP/.303 SLG, 2 doubles, 3 RBIs, 4 walks, 8 strikeouts
Paul Konerko (21): .389 BA/.476 OBP/.889 SLG, 3 home runs, 6 RBIs, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts
Alexei Ramirez (19): .235 BA/.316 OBP/.294 SLG, 1 double, 2 RBIs, 2 walks, 4 strikeouts
A.J. Pierzynski (13): .364 BA/.333 OBP/.455 SLG, 1 double, 3 RBIs, 2 strikeouts
Gordon Beckham (9): .250 BA/.333 OBP/.625 SLG, 1 home run, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 1 strikeouts
Brent Morel (9): .000 BA/.222 OBP/.000 SLG, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts
Brent Lillibridge (5): .000 BA/.200 OBP/.000 SLG, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts
Adam Dunn (3): .000 BA/.333 OBP/.000 SLG, 1 walk
Dayan Viciedo (3): .333 BA/.333 OBP/1.333 SLG, 1 home run, 2 RBIs, 1 strikeout
Alejandro De Aza (2): 1.000 BA/1.000 BA/2.000 SLG, 1 double, 1 walk
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