Rangers right-hander Andrew Cashner will be making his first start of his career at Fenway Park when he measures right-hander Rick Porcello in the first in a three-game series Tuesday night.
First baseman Mitch Moreland is hoping to be in the Boston lineup to face his former team, after leaving them via free agency last year.
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“It’s a bit bittersweet,” Moreland said. “Obviously I still have several friends there. It will be nice to see them and fun to compete against them.”
Cashner is coming off his first win of the year. He allowed two runs in seven innings in a 9-3 victory over the Phillies on Wednesday in Arlington.
Cashner has had problems with the first hitters of each entry. He is averaged .306, and his seven tickets are the fourth highest number in the Seniors. The opponents beat him to .103 with runners on base and .074 in scoring position.
Porcello has had a slow start after raising the Americana Cy Young trophy last year. One of the reasons is because it has not been so good before the rights, who have .314 of average and .504 of slugging before him; Last year those averages were .235 and .396 respectively.
Porcello has 5-4 and 5.69 EFEC in nine starts against the Rangers. It is the ninth highest effectiveness among active pitchers with at least five starts before them.
What you need to know about this game:
• Red Sox designated hitter Hanley Ramirez will be happy to return to Fenway Park. As of Monday, he averaged .329 in Boston, the eighth-best home average in the American League on the road. On the highway it has .167.
• Mike Napoli has played 44 games against the Red Sox in his career and has a .260 batting average. It also has a .639 slugging, being highest among active players with at least 100 turns in front of them. His 9.13 innings between each home run (146/16) is the best among the active and equals with Dave Kingman historically.
• Mookie Betts has a .362 career average in 13 games against the Rangers. He has hit 12 of those 13 games with at least two hits in eight of them.