Boston Red Sox get another crack at Sean Manaea

By Mike Shalin, The Sports Xchange  |  May 13, 2018 at 9:45 PM
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The last time Sean Manaea saw the Boston Red Sox, he tossed the 12th no-hitter in Philadelphia/Kansas City/Oakland Athletics history at them.

That was back on April 21, Manaea handing Boston only its third loss in 20 games this season.

Monday night, the Oakland left-hander opens his team's three-game visit to Fenway Park when he takes on unbeaten Boston righty Rick Porcello.

"I didn't even think about it until I looked up in the seventh or eighth, and I was like, 'Oh my God, why is there still a zero on there,'" Manaea said after the game. "So, after that, my adrenaline started pumping a little bit again, and I really wanted to finish this thing out."

Manaea's no-no was his second win in as many career starts against the Red Sox in Oakland, where he is 2-0 with a 1.29 ERA against one of the American League powers. However, in two career starts at Fenway, he is 0-2 with a whopping 21.32 ERA.

He also has struggled in his two May starts.

Coming into the month, he was 4-2 with a 1.03 ERA and .134 opponents' batting average against. But in two May starts, Manaea is 0-2 with a 6.17 ERA and .289 batting average against.

But despite the two four-run outings, coming into Sunday, Manaea had the third-lowest batting average against (.170), on base average (.215) and opponents' OPS (.503) and fourth in opponents' slugging percentage (.289).

His overall season pales in relation to Porcello, who is 5-0 with a 2.89 ERA on the season and has won seven straight decisions dating back to last year, one shy of his personal best.

He is, however, coming off a shaky start at Yankee Stadium, where he yielded five runs and eight hits in 5 1/3 innings on Wednesday.

Porcello is just 6-5 in 14 career games 13 starts against the A's. But he is 4-0 with a 2.55 in his last six starts against Oakland, starting in 2013.

Both teams played on the road over the weekend, the A's opening a 10-game/three-city road trip by losing two out of three to the Yankees. Oakland is 14-11 in its last 25 games.

The Red Sox, who open a six-game homestand and have 19 of their next 26 at Fenway, ended a 6-4 road trip with a 5-3 win on Sunday in Toronto and are 11-10 after their 17-2 start that ended with the Manaea gem.

With starter Drew Pomeranz lasting just four-plus innings Sunday, the Red Sox bullpen came through with five scoreless innings as Hector Velazquez continued his tremendous early work and improved to 5-0, with a 2.10 ERA.

"These are the days when I look back at managing at the big-league level. It's not that easy," manager Alex Cora said after the win. "There's certain days that there's nothing you can do. You want to match up, but you have to trust your guys."

Xander Bogaerts is 4-for-7 (.571), Mookie Betts 4-for-11 (.364) with two homers and a triple and Hanley Ramirez 3-for-10 (.300) with two home runs against Manaea. But J.D. Martinez and Jackie Bradley Jr. are both 0-for-6, Andrew Benintendi 0-for-5 and Eduardo Nunez 1-for-9 (.111) off the 26-year-old left-hander.

Jed Lowrie is 3-for-5 (.600) but Marcus Semien 0-for-12 and Jonathan Lucroy 0-for-5 against Porcello.

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