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American League Preview from The Sports Network



Sunday, April 14th (All times Eastern)

Tampa Bay Rays (4-6) at Boston Red Sox (6-4), 1:35 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Tampa Bay - Alex Cobb (1-0, 0.00) Boston - Clay Buchholz (2-0, 0.64)

(Sports Network) - A pair of young pitchers off to strong starts get together on Sunday when the Tampa Bay Rays visit the Boston Red Sox in what is now the middle test of a weather-altered three-game series at Fenway Park.

The teams were supposed to get started on Friday night, but the game was postponed and will be made up as half of a doubleheader on June 18.

Tampa will start 25-year-old Alex Cobb, who did not allow a run in his initial start of this season; while the Red Sox counter with 28-year-old Clay Buchholz, who's allowed just one run across a pair of starts.

Cobb, who won 11 of 23 starts with the Rays in his first extended stint in the big leagues last season, tossed 7 1/3 scoreless innings against Cleveland on April 6 while allowing just four hits in a 6-0 win.

The 2006 draft choice reached the majors with a 3-2 mark in nine starts at the end of 2011, then posted a 4.03 earned run average and held opposing batters to a .254 average while working 136 1/3 innings last year.

He's faced the Red Sox three times in 33 career starts, winning two of three decisions while surrendering five earned runs and striking out 11 in 16 innings.

Boston batters have registered an anemic .143 batting average against him.

Buchholz, meanwhile, has been similarly stingy against Tampa Bay, allowing just a .216 average while winning five of 10 decisions in 14 starts. He's worked 88 total innings against the Rays while allowing just 69 hits and striking out 81 batters.

Buchholz opened 2013 with seven innings of one-run ball in a 7-4 defeat of the New York Yankees on April 3 in New York, then returned home to pitch seven scoreless innings in Boston's 3-1 defeat of Baltimore on April 8.

He's 22-13 in 50 career games at Fenway with a 3.60 ERA.

On Saturday, Shane Victorino's RBI single in the bottom of the 10th lifted the Red Sox to a 2-1 win.

Brandon Gomes (0-1), who recorded the final out in the ninth, stayed on to pitch the 10th for Tampa Bay. Jacoby Ellsbury hit a one-out single to center, stole second and advanced to third on catcher Jose Lobaton's throwing error. Rays manager Joe Maddon opted to play a five-man infield, but Victorino clunked one between first and second and Ellsbury scored to give Boston the victory.

David Ross hit a solo homer for the Red Sox, who snapped a two-game skid. Starter Jon Lester allowed one run on five hits over seven innings. Junichi Tazawa (2-0) tossed a scoreless 10th to pick up the win.

Sean Rodriguez knocked in the lone run for the Rays, who have dropped four of five. David Price got the start and gave up one run on four hits while striking out eight over six innings.

The teams split an 18-game series in 2012, a year after the Rays won 12 of 18 games. The Red Sox haven't won the season series since 2007.

04/14 10:27:03 ET

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Scoreboard
MLB
Final
CHC 5
LOS 14
4th
BAL 1
BOS 2
 
4th
PIT 0
MIL 1
 
4th
NYY 3
TOR 2
 
3rd
TAM 2
CWS 0
 
4th
MIA 1
WAS 2
 
2nd
ATL 0
NYM 0
 
1st
COL 0
ARI 0
 
8:10pm Tonight
MIN
CLE
1st
KAN 0
DET 0
 
8:10pm Tonight
HOU
SEA
8:15pm Tonight
STL
CIN
9:35pm Tonight
OAK
PHI
10:05pm Tonight
ANA
TEX
10:10pm Tonight
SDP
SFG
1st
SFLA 7
UCONN 0