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Rays vs Red Sox Preview: Rays hope to split series with Boston

The battered and bruised Rays hope to get back to .500

Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays Photo by Joseph Garnett Jr. /Getty Images

The earliest Rays game of the season takes place today as the Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays will engage in the final game of their four game series at 11:05 am as Boston will host their annual Patriots’ Day game.

After taking the first game of the series on Friday, the Rays have lost their past two in a row and have fallen a game under .500 with a record of 6-7. The Red Sox meanwhile have improved to 7-5 and are now 3rd in the division with the Rays trailing a game and half behind.

Starting Pitchers

Blake Snell vs Steven Wright

So far during his young career, Blake Snell has been infuriatingly watch on the mound as he can go through periods of a game where he dominates opposing hitters and seems well on his way to pitch deep, but then a rough innings happens and he loses the zone.

He has made two starts this season and has walked a total of 8 batters over just 11 innings pitched. His last time out was on the 12th in New York against the Yankees where he taken out of the game with two outs in the fifth inning, having allowed two runs — none earned — on two hits, while he walked three and struck out one.

Steven Wright Scouting Report

It has been a rough start to the 2017 season for Steven Wright. During his first start, he put on a decent showing, pitching into the seventh inning, but he followed that outing up with an absolutely dreadful one.

He was only able to record four outs against the Orioles on the 12th, and they tagged him for eight runs on eight hits, including four home runs, while he was able to pick up a strikeout, it was awful.

His Arsenal

He’s a knuckleballer, that’s what he’ll throw.

On the off chance he doesn’t throw a the knuckler, he’ll come at the hitter with a mid 80’s fastball. His knuckleball averages in the low 70’s

Splits

In 2016, Wright was one of those pitchers that you didn’t want to let get settled in as he struggled the first time through the order but rebounded to dominate the rest of the game.

Meanwhile, he was much better against left-handed batter as opposed to righties giving him reverse splits. Something else to watch for are his struggles at Fenway Park as his wOBA is almost 100 points higher there than they were on the road in 2016.

Starting Lineups

Today's Lineups

TAMPA BAY RAYS BOSTON RED SOX
Corey Dickerson - LF Dustin Pedroia - 2B
Kevin Kiermaier - CF Andrew Benintendi - CF
Evan Longoria - 3B Mookie Betts - RF
Brad Miller - 2B Hanley Ramirez - DH
Steven Souza - RF Xander Bogaerts - SS
Logan Morrison - 1B Mitch Moreland - 1B
Rickie Weeks - DH Chris Young - LF
Derek Norris - C Sandy Leon - C
Tim Beckham - SS Marco Hernandez - 3B
Blake Snell - LHP Steven Wright - RHP