After the Boston Red Sox started the season winning 2-of-3 in each of the series against the New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays respectively, they were only able to take 1-of-3 from the Baltimore Orioles this week.
Friday night, the Red Sox will welcome American League East divisional rival the Tampa Bay Rays to Fenway Park for the first game of a four-game series. Following Friday night’s game, the Red Sox will have faced all teams in the AL East so far this season.
The Red Sox will send Felix Doubront to the mound. Doubront was Thursday night’s original scheduled starter, but after John Lackey went down with an arm injury, the Red Sox pushed the left hander’s start until Friday night.
Doubront was one of the better pitchers on the Red Sox roster in 2012, which isn’t saying much. The starter went 11-10 with a 4.86 ERA and 167 strikeouts over 161 innings. The 2012 season was his first full season in the major leagues, after making a few appearances between 2010 and 2011.
In Doubront’s first game this season he tossed five innings, striking out six and gave up three earned runs against the Blue Jays, but settled for the no-decision.
Alex Cobb will get the start for the Rays. In his only start so far this season, Cobb went 7.1 scoreless innings with six strikeouts, earning his first win of the season. This is Cobb second full season in the majors, after starting 23 games for the Rays in 2012.
Daniel Nava has the hot hand for the Red Sox. Over his past four games, Nava has gone 5-for-12 (.417) with three home runs and six RBI. The abundance of outfielders has made the decision on who to start tough for John Farrell. However, with David Ortiz rehabbing with Triple-A Pawtucket, Farrell has had the ability to put an additional outfielder in the DH spot.
The Red Sox will look to rebound from a tough past two nights against the Orioles and take the first game over the Rays. Friday night’s first pitch is set for 7:10 p.m. eastern.