Matt Moore takes another shot at win No. 1 this afternoon when the Tampa Bay Rays continue their four-game set with the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.
Moore pitched well in his season debut in Detroit, but struggled with his command, as he walked five batters. Other than that he was fine, surrendering two runs and four hits over 6 2/3 innings and did not factor in the decision of his team's 5-2 loss.
"That's guy terrific," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said of the 22-year-old left-hander. "To be honest, that's the first time I've seen him live, and he was as advertised. I was really impressed."
This will be Moore's first start against the Red Sox, but he did allow a run in a two hits in a three-inning relief stint last season.
Today, he will be trying to shut down a Boston offense that is starting to hit its stride.
After scoring 12 runs in the series opener on Friday, the Red Sox' bats were at it again on Saturday, as David Ortiz went 4-for-5 with a two-run home run and three-run double in Boston's 13-5 rout.
Cody Ross also hit a two-run home run and finished with four RBI, Jarrod Saltalamacchia hit a two-run homer while Mike Aviles and Dustin Pedroia added solo shots for the Red Sox, who have taken the first two games of this set by a combined 25-7 margin. Clay Buchholz (1-0) gave up five runs on six hits with three walks and five strikeouts over seven innings of work.
"I felt really good physically. I felt like in the beginning of the game my changeup wasn't there, everything was up," Buchholz said. "I was trying to be too quick to the plate out of the stretch and that caused the pitches to be up in the zone, but after that third inning when I gave up a run everything started to settle."
Before the game, the Red Sox placed outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury on the 15-day disabled list with a shoulder injury which could possibly sideline him anywhere from six to eight weeks.
Luke Scott hit a three-run home run and drove in four for the Rays, who have dropped three straight. Jeremy Hellickson went five innings in the start and gave up five runs on seven hits. Burke Badenhop (0-1) took the loss for giving up a run in 1 1/3 innings.
"Definitely location," Hellickson said of the reason for his struggles. "I've got to execute what I want to throw and just didn't do that."
Getting the call for the Red Sox tonight will be young lefty Felix Doubront, who like Moore, is also looking for his first win of the season. Doubront didn't get a decision on Monday in Toronto, as he allowed two runs and four hits in five innings of the Red Sox' 4-2 win. He also struck out six.
"Felix was awesome," said Pedroia. "He came out and attacked the zone. I thought he was great."
Doubront has faced the Rays four times (one start) and is 0-1 with a 3.12 ERA.
Tampa was 12-6 versus the Red Sox last season, with seven of those wins coming at Fenway.
On this the 65th anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier Major League Baseball is commemorating this special occasion by having all players and on-field personnel once again wear the Hall of Famer's No. 42, as well as other pregame festivities.