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Minnesota at Boston

Venue: Fenway Park
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The Boston Red Sox are still owners of the AL's best record, but they have some company thanks to a rough stretch - particularly from the rotation.

Dustin Pedroia will try to help get the Red Sox turned around by continuing his superb production at Fenway Park in the finale of a four-game series with the Minnesota Twins.

Boston (21-13) has dropped five of six thanks largely to the rotation's 7.98 ERA. The starters had a 3.00 ERA during a 7-1 run prior to this slump.

Despite the recent struggles, the Red Sox still have the best record in the AL, but they're now sharing that status with Baltimore and Texas.

Another poor start doomed Boston on Wednesday in a 15-8 loss, with rookie Allen Webster surrendering eight of the 11 runs that Minnesota (15-15) scored in the first two innings.

"A tough night from the mound. A number of pitches found their way to the middle of the plate," said manager John Farrell, whose Red Sox allowed 11 runs while splitting the previous two games with the Twins.

While Farrell hopes the pitchers can get untracked, Pedroia looks to continue his torrid hitting at home. The second baseman had his second three-hit game of the series Wednesday and is hitting .469 in his last eight at Fenway. He's batting .353 at home compared to .266 on the road.

The venue hasn't made a difference for Pedroia when facing the Twins. The three-time All-Star and 2008 AL MVP is a career .352 hitter against them, including five multihit efforts in 10 meetings since the start of last season.

The Red Sox are scheduled to turn to John Lackey (1-2, 3.52 ERA), who gave up a homer on his first pitch Saturday and allowed two more runs while issuing three walks in five innings of a 5-1 road loss to the Rangers.

The right-hander is 3-0 with a 2.08 ERA over his last four starts against the Twins but hasn't faced them since 2010.

Minnesota is looking to build on its best offensive display of the season, getting 19 hits with six doubles and two homers. The 15 runs were its most at Fenway since getting 17 in a win May 25, 1965.

Justin Morneau, Trevor Plouffe and Pedro Florimon each had three RBIs while totaling seven hits - four for extra bases.

Morneau has a career .345 average against Boston - .455 with 10 RBIs over the past eight matchups. However, he's 8 for 33 with one homer versus Lackey.

Kevin Correia (3-2, 2.83) is expected to get the ball hoping to rebound from his worst start of the year.

The veteran right-hander allowed a season-high four runs and two homers in five innings of a 7-3 loss at Cleveland on Saturday. It was the first time this year he failed to complete at least seven innings, and it snapped a three-start winning streak during which he had a 1.64 ERA.

"I just didn't have command of my pitches like I did in my last couple starts," Correia told the team's official website. "I fell behind guys, and they took advantage."

His only meeting with the Red Sox was a scoreless ninth inning of relief with San Francisco at Fenway on June 16, 2007.

Shane Victorino is 6 for 14 against Correia and has five hits in this series, including two homers.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Probable Starters

Kevin Correia, RHP
2013 stats
41.1 Innings Pitched 15.1
3-2 Wins-Losses 1-2
2.83 Earned Run Average 3.52
7 Walks 6
19 Strikeouts 16
97 Pitches Per Start 85
Career vs. opponent
1.0 Innings Pitched 102.2
0-0 Wins-Losses 7-5
0.00 Earned Run Average 3.68

John Lackey, RHP
Weather
weather image  Widely scattered tstorms. Overcast. Mild.
Hi TempLo TempWindHumidityPrecip %
67°F56°F8mph/SE68%59%
Standings
TeamStandingsWLPct.GBL 10Strk
Minnesota5th AL Central4757.452113-7 W 1
Boston5th AL East4857.45710 ½ 5-5 W 1
BATTER VS. PITCHER (Career)
vs John Lackey
PlayerABHHRBBSOAVG
Mauer2310212.435
Morneau3381210.242
Carroll400010
Correia000000
Diamond000000
 
BATTER VS. PITCHER (Career)
vs Kevin Correia
PlayerABHHRBBSOAVG
Victorino146111.429
Drew5213127.250
Ross133014.231
Gomes61010.167
Doubront000000
 

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Game Odds
AwayLineHomeLine
Minnesota 160 Boston -170
Injuries
Minnesota
PlayerInjury
K. GibsonBack
P. HughesShin
J. MauerOblique
R. NolascoElbow
M. PelfreyGroin
Boston
PlayerInjury
M. CarpFoot
R. DempsterNeck
R. LavarnwayWrist
W. MiddlebrooksFinger
 
Series Game Log
DateatResult/TimeWinnerLoser
Apr 25TORBOS 8-1Peavy Buehrle 
Apr 26TORBOS 7-6Buchholz Morrow 
Apr 27TORTOR 7-1Dickey Lester 
May 20BOSTOR 7-4Happ Doubront 
May 21BOSTOR 6-4Hutchison Buchholz 
May 22BOSTOR 7-2Buehrle Lester 
Jul 21TORBOS 14-1Lackey Hutchison 
Jul 22TORTOR 7-3Happ Peavy 
Jul 23TORTOR 6-4Dickey Buchholz 
Jul 24TORTOR 8-0Stroman De La Rosa 
Jul 28BOS 7:10 PM EDT  
Jul 29BOS 7:10 PM EDT  
Jul 30BOS 7:10 PM EDT  
Aug 25TOR 7:07 PM EDT  
Aug 26TOR 7:07 PM EDT  
Aug 27TOR 7:07 PM EDT  
Sep 5BOS 7:10 PM EDT  
Sep 6BOS 7:10 PM EDT  
Sep 7BOS 1:35 PM EDT