Hey, Webster brought the non-suck!  Maybe the worst starting pitcher in recent Red Sox history (John Lackey 2011 says hi) can display a little skill (that one start in Houston was so tantalizing…the pitches were working; it wasn’t just that the Astros sucked) against Garrett Richards.  Buchholz will need to bring something as Richards (ERA: 2.58) has been a revelation this year, giving up 5 home runs in 150+ innings.  That is crazytown, leading the league among qualifiers along with Adam Wainwright.  I’d like to see a ringing double off this guy by Papi’s latest protection, Cespedes, who got a 2-RBI 2-bagger off Weaver last night early.  I think I might try actually watching this game from the beginning…so I’ll drop by.  Say hi if you’re up for it.

Kluber (Indians ace) and McCarthy (has pitched like an ace since the Yankees got him–we call it Aaron Small Syndrome) tangle in this early Saturday start at The Stadium.

Bauer takes on Rogers at Yankee Stadium and Webster takes on Weaver in the second WW matchup in a row that is distinctly not in favor of the Red Sox.  But mostly, it’s Friday.  Thank goodness.

The Red Sox actually managed to win a baseball game yesterday, with Bogaerts driving in both runs in their 2-1 victory (the second one coming in the 9th on a sac fly).  Today’s pitchers are in the thread title.  Their last names start the same way, but their pedigrees are pretty far apart as of today.  But maybe the Sox can pull out another one.  I doubt it.  Comment if you’re watching the death march.  Sorry I missed the Yankee game (early).  The Yankees somehow won a 4-game series where the Detroit starters gave up 2, 3, 2, and 1 runs in each game.  Which totally doesn’t make me want to douse myself in gasoline and jump into a volcano.

Scherzer, Price, and Verlander: Cy Young winners all.  The Yankees face their third in three days in Justin Verlander.  He will be opposed by Chris Capuano.

The Cards are doing well enough; the Sox aren’t.  Joe Kelly takes on his old team, pitching against Shelby Miller.  Boston trudges through the rest of this lost season, evaluating AAA players and ostensible major leaguers for their place on next year’s team.  At least Shane Victorino got back surgery done so that we’re not pretending he can help this year.  Maybe he’ll be okay next year?

Wife just got an injection near her spine.  Not gonna be too fancy today.

Yanks (Kuroda) and Tigers (Price) got started almost an hour ago and are tied at 1.  Sox (De La Rosa) and Cardinals (Lynn) get started soon.

Scherzer and McCarthy have allowed zilch.  3rd inning.  How long will it stay scoreless?

It’s a rubber match between the 3rd and 5th place AL East teams!  NY is only 2.0 back of the second wild card with Toronto’s loss today, and 5.5 back of the division-leading O’s.

Phelps vs Buchholz.  What say ye?

Well, actually the Yanks could theoretically muscle their way back into the heart of the race…but I’d bet against it myself.  Greene and Webster take the hill on Fox in half an hour.

Well, here we are: a Yanks team treading water (but surely Martin Prado and Stephen Drew will be the difference-makers!) and a Sox team bereft of most of its veteran talent (and just about all of its season-starting rotation) and sinking fast on their way to a reload in the offseason.  Hopefully the Cespedes/Papi combination can show off their home run/bat flip/pirouette skills–that’ll really piss off Brian McCann.

A couple other reasons for Sox fans to watch: Sox castoff Capuano is pitching the bottom of the 1st, and newcomer Ranaudo the top.  Intriguing…or maybe not.  Comment if the rivalry still stokes your fire.

Lester and Gomes to the A’s for Cespedes.  Lackey to the Cards for Craig and Kelly.  Man, 4/5 of last year’s rotation is gone (Doubront in a minor deal to the cubs earlier, Peavy, Lester, Lackey)…the one remaining is the ever-enigmatic Buchholz.  Yikes.  Wonder if any supplementary moves are coming now…

The Yanks started the scoring with a run in the top of the 1st.  The Rangers answered and more with 3 of their own in the bottom of the initial frame.  Now the Yanks trail only by a run with a lot of game to play and a pitcher performing very poorly on the season to tee off on.  Kuroda vs. Lewis.

Lester was scheduled to start this game, but he was scratched in advance of tomorrow’s trade deadline.  Why risk injury to the best starter available on the trade market…and why not let the trade partner get an immediate start out of him on extra rest instead of having to wait a few days for his start on regular rest?  At this point, it seems most likely Lester has made his last start for the Red Sox (a game in which he left with a 1-run lead after 6, a lead the bullpen could not hold).  It remains to be seen who will blink and provide the king’s ransom that the Red Sox rightfully demand for two (or three!) months of last postseason’s best starter.

Instead, it’s Workman who will face a seemingly ageless Buehrle.  The results of tonight’s game matter for the Blue Jays.  It is clear that the rest of the season is only an experiment for the Red Sox as they mix in youth and look for which holes are most desperately in need of filling (that doesn’t sound right) before the 2015 season begins.  With the off-day tomorrow, here’s most likely your last chance to see Lester in the Red Sox dugout…unless a deal gets made in the next hour…

At work.  Both teams lost yesterday.  Not entirely unexpected.

Stroman vs. De La Rosa and McCarthy vs. Martinez.  Comment if you got ‘em.

Do yourself a solid and watch The Battered Bastards of Baseball. It’s wonderful.