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Thursday’s Red Sox-Orioles matchups: Alfredo Aceves vs. Chris Tillman

04.11.13 at 9:31 am ET
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Alfredo Aceves will make his first start of 2013 on Thursday night, as he takes the place of injured starter John Lackey in the rotation. Aceves counterpart will be Orioles right-hander Chris Tillman. Felix Doubront has been pushed back to start in Friday’s series-opener vs. the Rays. 

This will be Aceves’ first start since June 21, 2011, when he went five innings and allowed four runs on four hits and six walks with four strikeouts in a no-decision against the Padres. In two relief appearances this year, Aceves has a 0-0 record with a 10.38 ERA. He has allowed five hits and five runs in 4 1/3 innings. He has allowed a home run in each of his first two outings.

Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington noted that it has been the plan all along for Aceves to join the rotation if needed, and after Lackey’s biceps injury in Saturday’s loss to the Blue Jays, Aceves will have that opportunity.

“It just made sense for us to stick with that,” Cherington said. “We’ll see what he does. He’s certainly capable of being a good starting pitcher. He has the pitches in the mix. He’s excited for opportunity. We’ll see how it goes.”

For the O’s, Tillman will be looking to rebound from a tough outing on Saturday against the Twins. He pitched just 3 2/3 innings, allowing five runs on seven hits and four walks with four strikeouts, and was fortunate to come away with a no-decision. In his 15 totals starts in 2012, Tillman only allowed five or more earned runs once.

“I felt good throughout the whole game,” Tillman said. “Physically, I felt really good. Mechanically, I felt like I was fine. All game long, I was kind of yanking, yanking my fastball and my changeup. Made some good pitches with my changeup, but I threw it to the wrong part of the plate.”

The Sox might be a good opponent for Tillman to get back on track. He is 1-1 with a 2.88 ERA in 25 career innings against Boston.

Current Red Sox hitters are hitting a combined .222 with only two extra-base hits in their careers vs. Tillman. For the Orioles, Adam Jones has had the most success against Aceves, hitting .333 with a home run and two doubles.

Orioles vs. Aceves (RHP)

J.J. Hardy (18 plate appearances): .167 BA/.167 OBP/.167 SLG, 3 strikeouts

Adam Jones (18): .333/.333/.611, 1 home run, 1 RBI, 2 doubles, 2 strikeouts

Nick Markakis (17): .250/.294/.375, 2 doubles, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts

Matt Wieters (14): .083/.214/.167, 1 double, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts

Chris Davis (12): .167/.167/.167, 4 strikeouts

Nolan Reimold (11): .100/.182/.100, 3 strikeouts

Alexi Casilla (5): .250/.400/.500, 1 double

Ryan Flaherty (5): .400/.400/.600, 1 RBI, 1 double, 1 strikeout

Taylor Teagarden (4): .250/.250/.250, 1 RBI, 2 strikeouts

Manny Machado (3): .333/.333/.667, 1 double, 1 RBI, 2 strikeouts

Nate McLouth (2): .500/.500/1.000, 1 double

Chris Dickerson has a sacrifice fly and an RBI in one plate appearance vs. Aceves. Steve Pearce has a sacrifice bunt in one plate appearance vs. Aceves.

Red Sox vs. Tillman (RHP)

Dustin Pedroia (14 plate appearances): .364/.429/.455, 2 RBI, 1 double, 2 walks

Pedro Ciriaco (8): .167/.286/.167, 1 walk

Jarrod Saltalamacchia (8): .125/.125/.250, 1 double, 3 strikeouts

Jacoby Ellsbury (6): .167/.167/.167, 1 strikeout

Daniel Nava (5): .250/.400/.250, 1 walk, 1 strikeout

Mike Carp (3): .333/.333/.333, 1 strikeout

Mike Napoli (3): .333/.333/.333, 1 strikeout

Jackie Bradley Jr., Stephen Drew, Jonny Gomes, Will Middlebrooks, David Ross and Shane Victorino have never faced Tillman.

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