The Yankees are coming to town and while this usually brings an element of intrigue, the rivalry has lost a lot of it’s gusto lately thanks to the Red Sox poor play. But the Yankees are reeling and are clinging to their postseason position, meaning the Red Sox can help destroy the October dreams of the arch enemy and it begins Tuesday night. Here are the pitching matchups for the series, courtesy of the Globe:
Kuroda has been superior in his last two starts against the Red Sox, going 8.0 innings in each start and only surrendering two earned runs in one of the games. The first start of the season against Boston, the former Dodger was the victor in what was a shootout on July 6 despite giving up six earned runs. His last three starts of the year he’s averaged four earned runs, not bad, but not great either.
Lester on the other hand is giving us the indication that he may be turning the corner and finally pitching like the leader of the staff. He’s won four of his last five starts that included a complete game loss in Seattle. In August the lefty produced an ERA of 3.59 and a WHIP of 1.15, far better than his season averages and giving us all hope that maybe the Lester of old is back. His last start against the Yankess on August 18, Lester went 7.0 innings while only giving up one earned run on five hits.
Phelps has been in and out of the rotation for New York, serving as a bullpen arm for most of the season and spot starting when called upon. The 25-year old has appeared in three games against Boston this year and two of those games he gave up three earned runs.
Cook has been the victim of the stagnant Red Sox offense as of late, collecting only one win in his last ten games despite pitching fairly well in most of those starts. If you take out the August 31 start against Oakland, Cook has given up an average of three earned runs in his last five starts. He faced the Yankees on July 27 and surrendered six earned runs on seven hits through 4.0 innings.
Hughes has been one of the few bright spots for the Yankees of late, giving up five earned runs in one start and only average just over one in the last four. He’s beginning to resemble the role of the bulldog for the Yankees and they need Hughes to be just that if they want to stay ahead of the Orioles and Rays.
Doubront on the other hand, has been a bright spot for the Red Sox, at least for the first half of the year. His arm is tired and should probably shut down for the final three weeks, stretch him out in the spring and get him ready for next season. He’s averaged four to five earned runs in each of his last five starts and has spent time recently on the DL.