Per Redsox.com regarding the pitching matchup:
BOS: LHP Kason Gabbard (0-2, 3.38 ERA)
The rookie left-hander will fill in for the ailing Lester and make his second Major League start. Gabbard started against the Mariners on July 22, giving up eight hits and two earned runs over 5 1/3 innings in a tough-luck loss. He has pitched twice in relief, giving up a run over 2 2/3 innings.
OAK: RHP Esteban Loaiza (7-7, 5.12 ERA)
In his last start, Loaiza threw the sixth complete-game shutout of his career with a four-hit whitewashing of the Blue Jays. He needed just 103 pitches to complete his gem, and at one point retired 15 consecutive batters. The right-hander is 3-0 with a 1.76 ERA in his last five starts, and has recorded 27 strikeouts against just three walks in that span. He is 3-2 with a 4.76 ERA in 10 career appearances against Boston.
- Lester was scratched from tonight's start with a sore back (an issue in his last start, a victory, last Wednesday)
- Leftys are hitting .320 against Loiaza, Rightys .272. ERA at home this year is 5.06.
- Loaiza'a last start against Boston came at Fenway 7/13 with the following line:
No Decision 6.34ERA 5.0IP 6H 3ER 6BB 4K's
- Loiaza has struck out 7 in his last two outings (@Kansas City and @Toronto) with a 9 inning effort in the Kansas City match up. (see above)
- Gabbard last started July 22 @ Seattle with the following line:
Loss 3.38 ERA 5.1 IP 8H 2ER 2BB 3K's
- Gabbard also appeared in relief on August 22 @ Anaheim (1.2 IP 3.86 ERA 2H 1ER 1BB 0K) and August 25 @Seattle (1.0 IP 3.38ERA 0H 0ER 0BB 1K)
- The Sox have lost 9 of their last 11 games and 18 of 24 in August.
- Papi is 12 for 28 against Loiaza