Aug 15, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz (11) pitches during the third inning against the Houston Astros at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
The Red Sox meet the Blue Jays for the next to last meeting of the two teams in 2014, starting Monday for three games.
Game 1: Clay Buchholz (5-8, 5.92 ERA) versus J.A. Happ (8-8, 4.93 ERA). Clay isn’t the Clay that Red Sox fans once knew. He may not be again. Happ is hittable: he has an opponent batting average of .275 in his last ten starts. The Red Sox struggling offense will probably need more help than that to give Clay enough run support.
Game 2: Rubby De La Rosa (4-5, 3.69 ERA) versus R.A. Dickey (10-12, 4.08 ERA). Rubby started off strong in Boston, but his ERA has steadily risen. In his last ten innings of work he has allowed 17 hits and eight earned runs.
Game 3: Joe Kelly (2-3, 4.26 ERA) versus Marcus Stroman (7-5, 4.11 ERA). Toronto’s rookie is doing well. He’s had six quality starts in the last ten games, though only one in the last four games. Opponents are only batting .255 against him.
“As a matter of fact, I believe the Jays have way too much ground to cover and too many hot hands to play around in order to reach the postseason. As a team, they have as much talent as anyone, but I firmly believe that Alex Anthopoulos gambled the season away, waiting for those injured talents to return and help the team rather than address the need to replace them while they were out. Two months is a long time to play without three important pieces of the line-up, and playoff spots aren’t secured on the waiver wire.”