Jarrod Saltalamacchia Settling in to Cleanup Spot as Red Sox Settle in to Consistent Lineup


Jarrod Saltalamacchia Settling in to Cleanup Spot as Red Sox Settle in to Consistent LineupOne of the goals of trading Kevin Youkilis, said Boston Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington, was to make it easier for manager Bobby Valentine to fill out his lineup card on a day-to-day basis. Well, mission accomplished.

The Red Sox will employ the same lineup for the third consecutive day, featuring Daniel Nava in the leadoff role and Jarrod Saltalamacchia occupying the cleanup slot — where he's gone 5-for-18 with two home runs this year. Despite being the lineup that was shut out by Seattle Mariners ace Felix Hernandez on Thursday, that unit came back Friday night and put up five runs, four more than starter Aaron Cook would even need.

In fact, if there is any downside to the lineup, it's that the team can't come back with Cook again, who threw a ridiculous 81 pitches over nine inning in two-hitting the offensively inept Mariners. However, the Red Sox will welcome back Josh Beckett to the hill after a stay on the 15-day disabled list.

Beckett's had an interesting season, where even the stats don't tell the whole story. While his record and ERA stand at 4-7 and 4.14, respectively, his WHIP stands at a very good 1.15, suggesting his middling totals might be the result of bad luck. On the other hand, Beckett's strikeout rate is down, racking up only 56 in 78 1/3 innings, an indication that the 32-year-old isn't missing bats and fooling hitters as often.

Beckett will be opposed by 22-year-old Seattle Mariners rookie Erasmo Ramirez, who has mostly pitched out of the bullpen this season, but holds an 0-2 record with a 5.29 ERA in three starts.

Check out the lineups for both teams below.

Boston Red Sox

Daniel Nava, LF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
David Ortiz, DH
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
Will Middlebrooks, 3B
Cody Ross, RF
Ryan Kalish, CF
Mike Aviles, SS

Josh Beckett, RHP

Seattle Mariners

Ichiro Suzuki, RF
Casper Wells, CF
Kyle Seager, 3B
John Jaso, DH
Justin Smoak, 1B
Dustin Ackley, 2B
Miguel Olivo, C
Chone Figgins, LF
Munenori Kawasaki, SS

Erasmo Ramirez, RHP

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