Wednesday, May 31 2023

The Arizona Diamondbacks are back home to start a weekend series against the Boston Red Sox, who are visiting Phoenix for the first time since 2019. The series opener is Friday at 6:40 p.m. and can be seen on Bally Sports Arizona. Return here for news, updates and more.

Red Sox-Diamondbacks pitching matchup

Diamondbacks RHP Brandon Pfaadt (0-1, 7.56) vs. Red Sox LHP Chris Sale (4-2, 5.01).

Pfaadt gave up three runs in 5 1/3 innings against the Pirates last weekend in Pittsburgh, getting what seemed like a relatively quick hook in the sixth inning despite a pitch count at 85. Pfaadt continued to have trouble missing bats with his fastball, getting only two whiffs on 23 swings on the pitch in that outing. … With RHP Zach Davies likely to come off the injured list, it could be that Pfaadt will be trying to show in this outing he deserves to keep his rotation spot. … His most effective pitch has been his slider; hitters have just a .130 average on 15 balls in play. … Sale missed most of the previous three seasons with a variety of injuries and struggled for consistency early in the year. But he is perhaps getting closer to finding his old form in recent starts, logging a 2.30 ERA with three walks and 32 strikeouts in 27 1/3 innings over his past four starts. … From 2012-2018, Sale finished in the Top 6 in the AL Cy Young race every year, finishing as high as second place in 2017. … Sale has only faced three Diamondbacks hitters but has had good success against them: 3B Evan Longoria (.158 average, 38 at-bats), OF Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (.167 average, 18 at-bats) and 2B Ketel Marte (.167, six at-bats).

Coming up

Saturday: At Chase Field, 4:15 p.m., Diamondbacks RHP Zach Davies (0-0, 5.79) vs. Red Sox RHP Garrett Whitlock (1-2, 6.19).

Sunday: At Chase Field, 1:10 p.m., Diamondbacks RHP Merrill Kelly (5-3, 2.98) vs. Red Sox RHP Tanner Houck (3-3, 4.99).

Monday: At Chase Field, 1:10 p.m., Diamondbacks TBA vs. Rockies RHP Karl Kauffmann (0-2, 9.35).

Read more: Diamondbacks set to recall Jake McCarthy, option Dominic Fletcher

What to know about the Boston Red Sox

The Red Sox had a rough winter, losing out on multiple free agents, including one of their own in SS Xander Bogaerts, who left for the San Diego Padres. They then got off to a fast start, moving to 21-14 on May 6, but have gone just 5-10 over their past 15 games. Their offense has been potent, led by Japanese import LF Masataka Yoshida, who has compiled a .299/.373/.482 line with six homers and the same number of walks (17) as strikeouts. CF Jarren Duran has also swung the bat well since an early-season promotion from Triple-A, though he enters the series 0 for 19 in his past five games. The Red Sox have struggled to get quality work from their rotation and recently have bumped a pair of starters — RHPs Nick Pivetta and Corey Kluber — into bullpen roles. LHP Chris Sale and RHP Brayan Bello, whom the Diamondbacks will miss, have been throwing well of late. RHP Kenley Jansen is 10 for 13 in save chances.

More: How Diamondbacks’ catcher Gabriel Moreno can add power at plate

This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Pitching matchups for opener of Diamondbacks-Red Sox series Friday

Source: Yahoo Sports


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