When the Red Sox and the A’s begin their four-game series, on Thursday night in Oakland, one of the initiators will make his major league debut and another will be trying to find his pace, after starting the season late due To injuries.
On Feb. 18, Boston bought Hector Velazquez’s contract from the Mexican baseball league in an effort to add organizational depth to the rotation of openers. On the anniversary of his three-month signing, the 28-year-old pitcher was called to Major League Baseball from Triple A branch Pawtucket to open for the Red Sox and take the David Price rotation This one returns of the list of injured. Velázquez has been impressive for the Pawtucket, to register 2-1, with 1.55 of effectiveness in five outings.
Complete Game Coverage
Meanwhile, ace A’s Sonny Gray (0-1, 3.78 ERA) will be making his fourth start of the season, after beginning the year on the disabled list, with problems in his back muscle. His most recent start was the best, and he allowed two runs in six innings in Oakland in the loss to the Rangers.
Three things to know about this game
After playing under National League rules, in the last two games against San Luis, the Red Sox will recover designated hitter, Hanley Ramirez. Ramirez had a good chain of power in April, but has not yet exhibited that great performance he showed last year, in which he was one of the best batters in the American League.
From 2015-16, the rivals have increased their batting average and slugging against Gray’s straight from .267 / .363 to .312 / .513. But in three starts in 2017, Gray has limited the rivals to .250 / .386 with his straight.
A veteran of the American League West Division, now with Boston, Mitch Moreland easily has the most experience of Red Sox batters against Gray, who hit him 18-5 with three homers and five RBIs.