MLB Game Preview - Toronto at Boston
Fri Jun 21, 2019 7:10 PM EDT

NYM
5
CHC
4
F
SD
1
PIT
2
F
MIA
2
PHI
1
F
ATL
3
WAS
4
F
HOU
1
NYY
4
F
TOR
5
BOS
7
F(10)
DET
6
CLE
7
F
CHW
5
TEX
4
F(10)
CIN
11
MIL
7
F
LAA
1
STL
5
F
MIN
8
KC
7
F
SF
11
ARI
5
F
TB
5
OAK
3
F
BAL
9
SEA
10
F
COL
2
LAD
4
F
Jays ready to visit rested Red Sox, Sale
Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:49 AM

After a hard-fought 10-inning 7-5 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday night, the Toronto Blue Jays will visit a rested Boston Red Sox team for the opener of a three-game series Friday night at Fenway Park.

The Blue Jays, who avoided being swept at home by the Angels in the four-game series on Billy McKinney's two-run walk-off homer, face a difficult task against the Red Sox.

Boston will send out left-hander Chris Sale (3-7, 3.49 ERA) against Blue Jays right-hander Trent Thornton (2-5, 4.36).

The Red Sox needed the day off Thursday. They are coming off their most difficult stretch in the schedule of the season, going 18-15 (.545) across a 34-day span with just one off-day. They finished the stretch with a 9-4 win over the Minnesota Twins Wednesday at Minneapolis.

"I think as far as energy, and the way we played the last five or six days, we're in a good place." Red Sox manager Alex Cora said.

The Red Sox played 23 of the 33 games against American League playoff contenders with records of .500 or better. They went 12-6 in their final 17 games of the stretch.

This will be the third series between the Red Sox and Blue Jays this season. The teams split two games in Boston on April 9 and 11, and the Red Sox won three of four games in Toronto May 20-23.

The Red Sox have gradually worked their way back into contention in the AL chase for postseason spots. After a triumphant 2018 season that ended with a World Series championship, they started slowly this season.

They were 11-17 through April 28 but are 30-18 since.

The Blue Jays, meanwhile, have struggled for most of the season. The win on Thursday ended a seven-game losing streak at home. They are 2-5 over their past seven games and are in a 13-34 drought.

Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo was obviously relieved by the result on Thursday against the Angels, who had won the previous six games between the teams this season.

"It was a good team win against a team that has played well against us," he said.

The Blue Jays do have their closer Ken Giles back, and he pitched a perfect ninth with two strikeouts Thursday. He was activated Thursday after being on the injured list with elbow inflammation. Reliever Justin Shafer was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo.

Montoyo said he had thought of easing Giles into action by choosing an easier spot for him to pitch, but the closer told the manager he was ready to pitch in any situation.

The Blue Jays have a win against Sale in the only time they faced him this season, scoring five runs with seven hits over four innings against him in Boston on April 9.

Sale is 7-4 with a 2.67 ERA in 16 career games (13 starts) against the Blue Jays. At Fenway Park, however, he is 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in three starts.

He beat the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday, allowing two runs and six hits in six innings. He struck out 10, the fourth straight game in which he has recorded 10 or more strikeouts and eighth time in nine games.

Thornton earned his second career win Sunday at Houston, pitching 6 2/3 scoreless innings. This will be his first start against the Red Sox.

Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers left the game Wednesday in the fifth inning because of what the team called right hamstring tightness. He is considered day-to-day. Devers injured the hamstring on an infield hit.

--Field Level Media

Team Record Comparison

Team Standings GB W-L Aw/Hm Stk L10
Toronto            
Boston            

Scheduled Starting Pitchers

Trent Thornton - TOR
Matchup
Season
vs. Opp Has not pitched vs. Boston
Chris Sale - BOS
Matchup
Season
vs. Opp Has not pitched vs. Toronto

Hot Batters (Last 10 team games)

Injury Report