Good afternoon. Here's a preview of the game:
RED SOX (55-55)
Pitching: LHP Jon Lester (5-9, 5.36)
Pitching: RHP Ryan Dempster (5-5, 2.82)
Game time: 7:10 p.m.
TV/Radio: NESN / WEEI
Red Sox vs. Dempster: Gonzalez 2-17, Ross 2-15, Punto 0-4, Pedroia 0-3, Salty 1-4, Aviles 2-3, Crawford 1-3.
Rangers vs. Lester: Young 9-28, Kinsler 4-20, Hamilton 6-21, Andrus 5-16, Beltre 6-16, Napoli 6-15, Cruz 8-14, Murphy 209, Gentry 1-1.
Stat of the Day: Jarrod Saltalamacchia is only 9 of 45 (.200) against the Rangers since he was traded to the Red Sox. But seven of those hits have been for extra bases.
Notes: The Sox start the day nine games out of first and four games behind in the wild card. They have won two straight and are 4-4 on a homestand that has two games remaining. ... Lester is 3-2, 4.47 in nine career games against Texas. He faced them at Fenway on April 17 and got rocked (2 IP, 8 H, 7 R 7 ER, 4 BB, 2 K) in an 18-3 loss. Lester has looked better in his last two games this season (14 IP, 11 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 2 BB, 13 K) thanks to better downward action on his cutter and more of an attacking mentality on the mound. ... Dempster is pitching at Fenway for the first time since June 12, 2001 when he was a Marlin. He allowed four runs on seven hits over six innings that day. Troy O'Leary and Trot Nixon took him deep. Dempster faced the Sox (as a Cub) on June 15 at Wrigley Field. He threw seven shutout innings, allowing five hits. He walked two and struck out three. Dempster was pounded in his first start for the Rangers (4.2 IP, 9 H, 8 ER) by the Angels. ... Gonzalez is hitting .400 (60 of 150) in his last 38 games. He also has 24 RBIs in 22 games since the All-Star break, hitting .405 in that stretch. ... Crawford is 14 of his last 40 (.350) with eight extra-base hits and 12 RBIs. ... Aviles is 6 of his last 14 since missing five games with turf toe. ... Beltre has hit .310 at Fenway since the start of the 2010 season.
Song of the Day: "Love and Peace or Else" by U2.