Wednesday’s Red Sox-Twins matchups: John Lackey vs. Kyle Gibson
|06.18.14 at 9:43 am ET|
Lackey (8-4, 3.24 ERA) continues to be the Red Sox‘ best arm this season after throwing his 11th quality start of the year last Friday. He gave up three runs on seven hits in 6 2/3 innings in a 10-3 win over the Indians. He struck out five and walked just one. The right-hander has allowed three runs or fewer in nine of his last 10 starts, and is 6-2 with a 2.56 ERA in that span.
Lackey, however, deflected the praise to his offense after his latest win.
“Tonight was more about the offense more than anything,” Lackey said after the game. “The guys really swung the bats great, made a couple of great defensive plays for me, just a good team win.”
Lackey went 1-1 in a pair of starts against Minnesota last season. He gave up five runs — just one earned — in a 5-3 loss at Fenway on May 9, 2013, but shut down the Twins in six strong innings for a win 10 days later.
Lackey is 8-6 with a 3.35 ERA in 17 career starts against Minnesota. He’s particularly struggled against Twins slugger Joe Mauer, who is batting .367 lifetime against Lackey with two home runs and four RBIs in 31 career plate appearances.
Gibson (6-5, 3.55 ERA) has been playing arguably the best baseball of his young career as of late. The 26-year-old has a 2.37 ERA in his last six starts and has pitched shutouts in three of his last four outings, including his last two. On Friday the right-hander dominated the Tigers over seven innings, giving up five hits and two walks to go with three strikeouts to improve his June ERA to 1.80. Detroit’s Austin Jackson, Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez combined to go 1-for-7 against Gibson.
“His ball was moving really nice,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said after the game. “He had them in the defensive mode. You could see them fighting off pitches.”
Wednesday will be Gibson’s first career start against the Red Sox and their current roster.
Twins vs. Lackey (RHP)
Kurt Suzuki (35 plate appearances): .182 AVG/.200 OBP/.394 SLG, 1 HR, 1 triple, 2 doubles, 3 RBIs, six strikeouts
Joe Mauer (31): .367/.387/.567, 2 HR, 4 RBIs, 1 walk, 7 strikeouts
Eduardo Nunez (15): .333/.467/.583, 3 doubles, 3 walks, 2 strikeouts
Kendrys Morales (6): .400/.333/.400, 1 RBI
Josh Willingham (6): .000/.000/.000, 2 strikeouts
Oswaldo Arcia (5): .500/.600/1.750, 1 HR, 1 triple, 2 RBIs
Pedro Florimon (5): .200/.200/.200, 2 strikeouts
Brian Dozier (4): .000/.000/.000, 2 strikeouts
Sam Fuld (3): .000/.000/.000, 2 strikeouts
Chris Parmelee is hitless in two career plate appearances.
Red Sox vs. Gibson (RHP)
No Red Sox players have faced Gibson.
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