Monday July 05, 2010 | 06:59 AM

The Boston Red Sox, with six All-Stars (and maybe seven, if Kevin Youkilis is added), sure is a talented team. Too bad half of the six are on the disabled list, or going there (Dustin Pedroia, Victor Martinez & Clay Buchholz). At least Jon Lester, David Ortiz and Adrian Beltre will play.

After the Sox lost on Sunday, the AL East leaders are New York 50-31; Boston 49-33 (1.5 back) and Tampa Bay 48-31 (2 back)

Tough series for Boston to begin the week. With injuries hitting the rotation, the Red Sox are going with starters 4, 5 and 5B in St. Petersburg. The pitching match-ups favor the Rays:

Tonight: Daisuke Matsuzaka (5-3, 4.50) vs. Matt Garza (9-5, 4.08);

Tuesday: Felix Doubront (1-0, 5.40) vs. Jeff Niemann (6-2, 2.80)

Wednesday: Tim Wakefield (3-6, 4.96) vs. David Price (11-4, 2.42)

Pawtucket outfielder Ryan Kalish (.317) got three hits on Sunday,. Since coming back from the disabled list June 27, Kalish is batting .500 (11-for-22).

The good news for the Sea Dogs is they will not have to face New Hampshire's Kyle Drabek this week. Drabek, whom was acquired in the Roy Halladay trade, pitched a no-hitter against New Britain on Sunday. Still, Portland faces a challenging four-game series against the Fisher Cats, starting tonight at Hadlock Field.

Portland (41-41) is 10 games behind leading Trenton (51-31). New Hampshire is in second place (49-34).

The Sea Dogs had 13 hits in Sunday's loss. Che-Hsuan Lin (.265) had three of them.

I'll check in later from Hadlock.


About this Blog

Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.

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