Yankees vs Red Sox: Live Stream, Injuries, Pitching Matchups and Fantasy Preview
One of the best rivalries in sports heats up this weekend as the New York Yankees visit the Boston Red Sox for a three-day, four-game series. The teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday as they both look to enter the All-Star break on a high note.
Aside from losing Mariano Rivera, the Yankees couldn't have drawn up the first half any better. They are in first place by five games in the AL East and haven't even reached their peak yet. It wouldn't be a surprise to see them hold that lead until season's end.
Things haven't been going nearly as smooth for the Red Sox.
A bunch of injuries have caused the lineup to get shaken up numerous times, but help should finally be on the way. Jacoby Ellsbury and Carl Crawford are both on rehab assignments and should help dig Boston out of the basement.
Let's take a look at all the key information for the first game of the series and preview what should be an interesting weekend at Fenway Park.
Which team will win the series?
When: Friday, July 6 at 7:10 p.m. ET
Where: Fenway Park in Boston, Mass.
Watch: YES Network (New York) and NESN (Boston)
Live Stream: MLB.tv
Injury Report (via CBS Sports)
Yankees: Brett Gardner (out, elbow), Andy Pettitte (out, shin), Joba Chamberlain (out, elbow/ankle) and Mariano Rivera (out, knee)
Red Sox: Dustin Pedroia (questionable, thumb), Jacoby Ellsbury (rehab, shoulder), Carl Crawford (rehab, wrist/elbow), Scott Podsednik (rehab, groin) and Daisuke Matsuzaka (out, neck)
Starting for New York: Hiroki Kuroda
Kuroda has been a nice addition for the Yankees. It's always tough to predict how a pitcher will react to the constant pressure that comes with playing in New York, but the former Los Angeles Dodger has been solid the entire way.
He currently sports an 8-7 record with a 3.17 ERA. This will be his first start of the season against the Red Sox, however, which will be a true test of his mental toughness.
As fans have seen so often during the rivalry, things can get out of hand fast if a pitcher has an off night.
Luckily for him, the Red Sox lineup isn't at full strength yet. He's coming off of his best start of the season, seven scoreless innings with 11 strikeouts against the Chicago White Sox, and that momentum should lead him to another good outing.
Phil Hughes, Freddy Garcia and Ivan Nova are scheduled to pitch Games 2-4.
Starting for Boston: Josh Beckett
Beckett is pretty much the direct opposite of Kuroda. Whereas the Yankees starter has always been consistent, Beckett can look like two completely different pitchers from one start to the next.
That's caused a lot of gray hair in Boston, to say the least.
The 32-year-old veteran has gone winless over his last five starts, a combination of lackluster performances and weak run support. There isn't much manager Bobby Valentine can do, however—he just has to hope Beckett turns things around quickly.
Beckett will also be looking to change his luck against the Yankees. He has an ERA of 5.36 against the Bronx Bombers in 27 career starts. A victory would provide him with a confidence boost heading into the second half.
Franklin Morales, Felix Doubront and Jon Lester are scheduled to pitch Games 2-4.
Yankees Fantasy Studs
Which Yankees star will have a better series?
Whether it's because he plays for the star-studded Yankees or because he makes his high level of production seem so easy, Cano doesn't get nearly enough respect.
He's one of the game's best pure hitters and will be for a long time.
He's hitting .316 with 20 home runs so far, which means 40 long balls isn't out of the question. At a weak fantasy position like second base, those numbers are almost unheard of, making Cano an owner's dream.
He has a .318 career average against Boston.
Even though fantasy owners were probably expecting more stolen bases from Granderson, it's impossible to complain about his power numbers. He's hit 23 home runs through 81 games and appears well on his way to back-to-back 40-homer campaigns.
The move to Yankee Stadium was perfect for his quick, compact swing. Balls that would have barely made the warning track in Detroit fly out of the park with ease in New York.
The speed should pick up in the second half, but he's an elite option regardless.
Red Sox Fantasy Studs
The Red Sox are lucky Ortiz is having another tremendous season, or they would be even further behind the Yankees. The fan favorite is hitting .302 and has crushed 22 home runs, often without much protection in the Boston lineup.
Things should get even better for him after the break, when Ellsbury and Crawford are slated to return. That will significantly increase his RBI opportunities, making him one of the most reliable fantasy players heading into the stretch run.
It's been an upside-down year at the catcher position. While big names like Brian McCann and Carlos Santana are struggling to match expectations, Saltalamacchia has led a strong crop of underrated options that have been great waiver finds for owners.
Although his batting average (.245) leaves room for improvement, he has provided 16 homers and 38 RBI. That's pretty good for somebody that went undrafted in most leagues.
Perhaps he is finally realizing the potential first seen when he was with the Atlanta Braves.
Game 1 Prediction
Yankees 6, Red Sox 4
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