Extra Bases

Game 55: Athletics at Red Sox

It’s the final game of the series and the homestand. Here are the lineups:

RED SOX (31-23)
Scutaro SS
Pedroia 2B
Martinez C
Youkilis 1B
Beltre 3B
Lowell DH
McDonald CF
Hall RF
Hermida LF

Pitching: RHP Tim Wakefield (1-3, 5.68).

ATHLETICS (28-26)
Davis CF
Barton 1B
Sweeney RF
Suzuki C
Cust DH
Kouzmanoff 3B
Gross LF
Ellis RF
Pennington SS

Pitching: LHP Brett Anderson (2-1, 1.88).

Game time: 1:35 p.m.

TV/Radio: NESN/WEEI.

State of the Sox: The Sox have won four straight, nine of 11 and 12 of the last 15. They start the day five games out of first place and 2.5 games out of the wildcard. The Rays are off today and the Yankees have an afternoon game against the Orioles.

Pitching power: The Sox have a 2.91 ERA over their last 11 games.

Home cooking tasting better: The Sox have won 17 of their last 24 games at home including nine of the last 12.

Beware of the monster: David Ortiz has eight home runs in his last 17 games. He is 22 of 57 (.386) in that stretch with 22 RBI. Ortiz has hit safely in 19 of his last 22 games at .387.

Papi milestone watch: Ortiz is three hits away from 1,500 for his career and needs five RBI to tie Manny Ramirez for sixth place in team history with 868.

Can’t buy one: Jeremy Hermida is hitless in his last 15 at-bats.

Trying again: Wakefield is starting for the first time since he allowed an unsightly nine runs on 12 hits in 3.2 innings against the Royals last Friday. Wakefield is 11-6, 4.08 in 39 career appearances against Oakland, 28 of them starts.

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He was 2-0, 3.00 in two starts against Oakland last season.

Making his case: If Wakefield continues to falter, young lefty Felix Doubront has an 0.77 ERA in his first 11.2 innings for Triple-A Pawtucket after posting an 2.51 ERA in 43 innings for Double-A Portland. For the year, he has allowed 49 hits over 54.2 innings and struck out 49.

Big challenge: Anderson is making his second start since spending 34 days on the disabled list with a sore elbow. The 22-year-old was 2-1 with a 2.05 ERA against the Sox last season, allowing 11 hits and striking out 22 over 22 innings.

Opponents are hitting .213 against him this season with only six extra-base hits. He has not allowed a home run over 28.2 innings this season.

On the iPod right now: Let Me Ride by Dr. Dre. Don’t play that one for the kids.

Back with much more later on including a live in-game blog. Theo Epstein and scouting director Amiel Sawdaye also plan to discuss the upcoming draft. We’ll let you know what they say.

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