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Major League Baseball
Preview
Boston at Tampa Bay
When: 1:10 PM ET, Monday, September 1, 2014
Where: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Florida

The Boston Red Sox are well out of the American League playoff race, but they have won four of their last six games while putting some promising young talent on display. Rubby De La Rosa goes to the mound as the Red Sox look for their second straight series victory on the road Monday against the Tampa Bay Rays. Mookie Betts, a 21-year-old outfielder, registered his third multi-hit performance in his last seven games and knocked in a run as the Red Sox blanked the Rays 3-0 on Sunday.

The Red Sox will likely be without Dustin Pedroia (concussion-like symptoms), but manager John Farrell told reporters Sunday his All-Star second baseman felt better. Slugger David Ortiz has reached base in 26 of his last 43 plate appearances for Boston and will face a difficult test against Rays starter Drew Smyly. The left-hander has been brilliant since arriving in the David Price trade, going 3-1 while giving up six runs and 18 hits in 36 innings.

TV: 1:10 p.m. ET; NESN (Boston), Sun Sports (Tampa Bay)

PITCHING MATCHUP: Red Sox RH Rubby De La Rosa (4-5, 3.81 ERA) vs. Rays LH Drew Smyly (9-10, 3.31)

De La Rosa owns just one victory in his last seven starts, but has kept the Red Sox in games most of the season while taking a regular spot in the rotation. The 25-year-old Dominican Republic native has allowed three or fewer runs in 10 of 14 outings, including five of the last seven. De La Rosa pitched seven shutout innings to beat the Rays 7-1 on May 31, with Ben Zobrist notching a double for one of four hits off him.

Smyly has been especially strong in his last two starts while yielding one run and four hits over 16 innings, earning his first career shutout. The Arkansas native beat Boston on June 6 while with Detroit, permitting two runs (one earned) in six innings to improve to 2-0 with a 2.70 ERA in his career against the Red Sox. David Ortiz is 4-for-7 with a homer versus Smyly, who has 118 strikeouts and 38 walks.

WALK-OFFS

1. Red Sox OF Yoenis Cespedes has 13 hits in 35 at-bats with nine RBIs over his last nine contests.

2. Tampa Bay is expected to recall OF David DeJesus, who has been out since June 18 with a hand injury, when the rosters expand Monday.

3. Boston SS Xander Bogaerts had a pair of hits in Sunday’s victory, matching the amount he had in his previous 10 games.

PREDICTION: Rays 4, Red Sox 1



Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away East Central West IL
Boston 60-76 W1 29-40 31-36 23-34 14-15 14-19 9-8
Tampa Bay 66-71 L1 30-38 36-33 27-30 12-14 17-17 10-10
Last Meeting
Boston Tampa Bay
Date Away Home Avg HR OPS Avg HR OPS
8/31/14 BOS 3 TB 0 .257 0 .592 .103 0 .241
Player Stats
Season Series
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
Boston X. Bogaerts .260 13 .711
Tampa Bay J. Loney .271 16 .645
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
Boston B. Holt 1 6 5
Tampa Bay D. Jennings 2 8 5
Pitching ERA Avg K
Boston 3.17 .227 115
Tampa Bay 3.45 .217 147
Season
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
Boston B. Holt .289 123 .724
Tampa Bay J. Loney .285 147 .708
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
Boston D. Ortiz 30 52 95
Tampa Bay E. Longoria 17 70 76
Pitching ERA Avg K
Boston 3.95 .243 1036
Tampa Bay 3.46 .249 1232