Monday’s Red Sox-Rangers matchups: John Lackey vs. Tanner Scheppers
|04.07.14 at 10:55 am ET|
Lackey comes into the game after kicking off his season with a 6-2 win on April 2 against the Orioles. The veteran right-hander gave up just two earned runs on three hits over six innings and struck out six en route to Boston’s first victory of the season.
After the win, Lackey, who tossed just 90 pitches, credited new Boston backstop A.J. Pierzynski with some of the outing’s success.
“I always try to work pretty quick, especially when you’re throwing strikes and feeling pretty good about it,” Lackey said. “A.J. called a great game. That helps a lot with tempo when you don’t really have to think too much about what pitch you want to throw. When he’s throwing down the one you’re looking for, things kind of roll pretty good.”
Lackey historically has struggled against the Rangers, as he is just one of two pitchers with at least 29 starts against Texas to have a losing record. The 35-year-old is an overall 12-15 in 38 starts vs. the Rangers with a 6.01 ERA and a WHIP of 1.59. He last faced off against the Rangers on June 5, 2013, when he got a no-decision after giving up one run on five hits with five strikeouts over six innings. Boston ultimately lost the game 3-2 after Craig Breslow gave up two runs in the seventh.
Scheppers, who is in his third season at the major league level, has limited experience against the Red Sox, with just five relief appearances against Boston. Scheppers’ last outing against the Sox came on June 6, 2013, when he came in for the eighth and struck out two batters while walking one in a scoreless inning.
Scheppers struggled mightily in his first career start on March 31 against the Phillies. The 27-year-old gave up seven earned runs on eight hits over four innings. Six of those runs came in a particularly rough second inning when Scheppers gave up six runs, four of which came on a grand slam by Jimmy Rollins.
Rangers vs. Lackey (RHP)
Adrian Beltre (64 plate appearances): .213 AVG/.250 OBP/.377 SLG, 1 double, 3 HR, 13 RBIs, 3 walks, 14 strikeouts
Elvis Andrus (30): .179/.207/.286, 1 double, 1 triple, 3 RBIs, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts
Alex Rios (26): .240/.240/.280, 1 double, 3 RBIs, 8 strikeouts
Shin-Soo Choo (18): .400/.500/.467, 1 double, 3 RBIs, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts
Mitch Moreland (11): .300/.364/.400, 1 double, 1 walk, 1 strikeout
J.P. Arencibia (9): .125/.222/.500, 1 HR, 2 RBIs, 1 walk, 1 strikeout
Prince Fielder (9): .444/.444/.667, 2 doubles, 1 RBI
Josh Wilson (6): .000/.167/.000, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts
Leonys Martin (4): .333/.500/.333, 1 walk, 1 strikeout
Donnie Murphy (3): .500/.667/1.000, 1 double, 1 RBI, 1 walk
Red Sox vs. Scheppers (RHP)
Mike Napoli has one walk in two plate appearances.
Mike Carp has one strikeout in one plate appearance.
Jonny Gomes and Daniel Nava are both hitless in one plate appearance.
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