Friday’s Red Sox-Yankees matchups: Felix Doubront vs. Andy Pettitte
|07.19.13 at 8:35 am ET|
When Felix Doubront and the Red Sox open up the second half of their 2013 campaign against the Yankees at Fenway Park on Friday night, the first of 10 straight AL East contests, they will face a familiar foe: left-hander Andy Pettitte.
Doubront (6-3, 3.91 ERA), also a southpaw, is in the midst of his best stretch as a major leaguer, a 2.54 ERA, 1.17 WHIP and .224 opponents batting average in his last eight starts since the beginning of June.
It hasn’t been since May 8 — when Doubront was passed over for his turn in the rotation but gave up six runs in 5 1/3 innings of relief — that he has given up more than three earned runs in an outing.
The trend continued in a big way Doubront’s last time out when he dominated the Mariners in a 11-4 Red Sox win July 10. In seven innings, he yielded just one run on five hits and two walks while striking out six, a performance that drew more praise from manager John Farrell.
“He continues on a very strong roll,” Farrell told reporters after the game. “I think over the last 11 starts, I know it’s been quality outings for him, but really over the last three or four the overall command continues to remain consistent, continues to be sharp.”
Doubront credited some of the success to the Red Sox jumping out to an early lead, 2-0 after two innings and 4-0 after three.
“Those runs make me more comfortable to throw the changeup right there, [in a] fastball count,” Doubront said afterward. “Just go ahead and throw the changeup and keep them off balance. Inning by inning, I was feeling really good.”
On the other side, the 41-year-old Pettitte (7-6, 4.39 ERA) has been far less effective since mid-June. He is allowing well over a hit per inning (49 hits in 37 frames) and owns a 5.35 ERA in those six starts. In that time, opposing teams are hitting .320 with an .811 OPS.
His most recent start, an 8-4 win over the Royals on July 11, was mediocre. He gave up four runs (three earned) on eight hits and one walk in 5 2/3 innings, fanning only one.
Pettitte could face a similar fate Friday. David Ortiz has mashed against Pettitte over the years, collecting eight extra-base hits (one double, one homer) to go with his .956 OPS in 72 plate appearances.
Yankees vs. Doubront (LHP)
Robinson Cano (17 plate appearances): .071 BA/.235 OBP/.071 SLG, 3 walks, 4 strikeouts
Derek Jeter (13): .154/.154/.154, 3 strikeouts
Ichiro Suzuki (9): .250/.222/.250, 1 RBI
Brett Gardner (6): .000/.167/.000, 1 walk, 1 strikeout
Eduardo Nunez (5): .500/.600/.750, 1 double, 1 walk, 1 strikeout
Vernon Wells (4): .250/.250/.250, 1 strikeout
Travis Hafner (2): .500/.500/.500
Chris Stewart walked and recorded a sacrifice fly in two plate appearances against Doubront.
Lyle Overbay recorded an out in his only plate appearance against Doubront.
Austin Romine recorded an out in his only plate appearance against Doubront.
Zoilo Almonte, Luis Cruz and Albert Gonzalez have never faced Doubront.
Red Sox vs. Pettitte (LHP)
David Ortiz (72 plate appearances): .361 BA/.431 OBP/.525 SLG, 7 doubles, 1 home run, 13 RBIs, 9 walks, 15 strikeouts
Dustin Pedroia (44): .214/.250/.310, 4 doubles, 6 RBIs, 2 walks, 1 strikeout
Jacoby Ellsbury (27): .333/.385/.375, 1 double, 6 RBIs, 2 walks, 5 strikeouts
Jonny Gomes (27): .320/.296/.480, 1 double, 1 home run, 7 RBIs, 10 strikeouts
Shane Victorino (20): .389/.400/.556, 1 home run, 3 RBIs, 1 walk, 1 strikeout
Mike Napoli (19): .412/.474/.471, 1 double, 2 walks, 6 strikeouts
Mike Carp (3): .000/.000/.000
Jose Iglesias (3): .667/.667/.667
Jarrod Saltalamacchia (3): .000/.000/.000, 2 strikeouts
Daniel Nava (2): .500/.500/.500, 1 RBI, 1 strikeout
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