The first meeting between the teams did not go so well for the Sox, who dropped a 5-1 decision. Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels outdueled John Lackey, who walked a season-high five and gave up four runs in five innings.
Boston will look for a better effort out of Daisuke Matsuzaka. Three of his four starts have been rather poor, and he seemed shaken a bit after a rough outing in New York earlier this week.
Philadelphia counters with Kyle Kendrick, who has won his last two decisions.
WHEN AND WHERE
HEAD TO HEAD
The Sox have won five straight series against the Phillies.
RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka (2-1, 7.89 ERA) vs. RHP Kyle Kendrick (2-1, 5.24 ERA)
The vultures flying high over Matsuzaka will be calling on their friends if he struggles again.
The righty gave up four runs before ever recording an out in his last outing Monday in New York. He managed to last 4 2/3 innings, giving up seven runs on nine hits in an 11-9 loss.
Matsuzaka has now given up at least five runs in three of the four starts he has made since returning from the disabled list.
He and catcher Victor Martinez appeared to be having some issues with pitch selection in the loss to the Yankees. Expect Jason Varitek to be behind the plate Saturday, especially with Martinez catching Friday and a day game on Sunday with Tim Wakefield on the mound.
Martinez and Wakefield are always paired with one another.
Kendrick, who won 21 games over his first two seasons in 2007 and 2008, has won just five in 17 appearances for the Phillies since. But two of them came in his last three starts.
The 25-year-old is 2-0 with a 2.57 ERA in that span.
In one start and one relief appearance against the Red Sox, Kendrick has given up nine runs in five innings.
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
J.D. Drew, RF
David Ortiz, 1B
Adrian Beltre, 3B
Jeremy Hermida, LF
Jason Varitek, C
Marco Scutaro, SS
Daisuke Matsuzaka, P
Shane Victorino, CF
- First baseman Kevin Youkilis has reached base in 21 straight games.
- Outfielder Darnell McDonald has hit safely in nine of his last 10 games, batting .333 (11-for-33) in that stretch.
- Since the start of the 2008 season, John Lackey has lost in consecutive outings just twice, including his current slide.
- First baseman Ryan Howard has reached safely in 16 games, batting .359 (23-for-64) with a pair of home runs and 14 RBIs.
- The Phillies are a season-high 11 games over .500.
- Cole Hamels is 3-0 with a 3.26 ERA in four starts in May.
BLACK AND BLUE
- Right-hander Josh Beckett, on the 15-day disabled list with a lower back strain, threw lightly Friday. He is expected to throw a side session soon.
- Left fielder Jacoby Ellsbury will be activated from the DL on Saturday. He has been out since April 18 with fractured ribs.
- Center fielder Mike Cameron, also out since April 18 with an abdominal strain, hit a solo homer in four at-bats for in another rehab game for Double-A Portland on Friday.
- Righty Boof Bonser allowed two runs on four hits in 4 1/3 innings Monday in his fifth rehab start for Pawtucket.
- Shortstop Jimmy Rollins left Friday's game with a mild right calf strain, the same injury that caused him to miss a month earlier in the year. He is considered day-to-day.
- Closer Brad Lidge received a cortisone shot earlier this week as he works his way through right elbow inflammation.
- Reliever Ryan Madson had surgery on a broken toe earlier this month.
- Lefty J.A. Happ is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Friday as he recovers from a left forearm strain.
- Catcher Brian Schneider is expected to start a rehab stint in the minors Friday. He is on the DL with a left Achilles strain.
There were a whole host of issues surrounding Matsuzaka's start in New York, from him getting hit hard to his communication problems with Martinez to his apparent frustration after the game. The righty's only quality start came against a free-swinging Toronto club. Putting it all together against a quality lineup like the Phillies would do wonders for Matsuzaka.