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Red Sox to start season with five starters

Mar 27, 2010, 10:31 AM EDT

Tim Wakefield spoke for many of us the other day when he said he was “very curious” about the team’s plans for their starting rotation. Well, manager Terry Francona finally revealed on Friday that Josh Beckett, John Lackey, Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz and Wakefield will all start the season in the rotation, according to Amalie Benjamin of the Boston Globe.

With three days off in the first 10 days of the season, the team could have easily gone without a fifth starter until April 18. But now Francona has the luxury of tinkering with his starters in the early part of the schedule, such as using Beckett twice before Buchholz makes his first start of the season.

“We thought about a lot of things,” Francona said. “We’re trying to
balance present, future, performance, winning, and I think we’re all
comfortable with where we got to. There are some things that could
change, with weather and things like that. How must rest is too much?
How much is not enough? I think we’re pretty comfortable with where we
ended up.’

The first three spots of the rotation were locks, obviously, but most of the discussion this spring has been about the 43-year-old Wakefield, who has been very effective after offseason back surgery and Clay Buchholz, who has a 10.80 ERA in 6 2/3 innings of exhibition action.

They’ll be evaluated very carefully over the first few weeks of the season, as Daisuke Matsuzaka, who has been bothered by neck and back issues this spring, could be ready to return by the end of April.
 

  1. Bill in MD - Mar 27, 2010 at 11:45 AM

    In case you need even MORE proof the league tilts the playing field for the Sox and Yanks, the Sox has 3 days off in the first 10 days of the season. The Orioles have NO OFF DAYS for the first 16 days, including a Thursday night game in TB and then a 3:05 game the next day in Baltimore for Thursday/Friday of the first week. Toronto gets a day off before the O’s home opener to get in town, but not the O’s. They will finish at Tampa Bay at about 10:30 Thursday, get on a plane, and start the next game at 3:05 in Baltimore less than 18 hours later.
    NO travel day for their first West Coast swing in mid-April – day game against TB one day, night game against Oakland 3,000 miles away the next day. In their first 21 games, they play 12 consecutive games against the Yanks and Red Sox.
    I’d have a lot more respect for Bud Selig if he just came out and admitted, “Yeah, we want the Sox and Yanks in the playoffs every year. So we’re going to favor them to make it happen. Get over it.”

  2. Big Harold - Mar 27, 2010 at 12:20 PM

    Feeling a little inferior are we??
    They play the same number of games in the same time frame. In the O’s have no days off initially they’ll have more in season. Save the conspiracy theories for real conspiracies.

  3. Nasty Boy - Mar 27, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    Looks like the Pillsbury doughboy(Matssuzaka) needs a little more time to get in shape. Maybe the Sux can find a few more retreads to fill in for him .

  4. Matusz for ROY - Mar 28, 2010 at 12:29 PM

    It is a rough start for the O’s, but I’m open to it. I’d rather play the sox and yanks now than at the end of the year when they are in playoff form. A few times in the past 5 years the O’s have gotten off to a hot start, so you never know we might do it again. I think we are going to start showing some swagger this year with our young guys. Markakis and Adam Jones are looking like they are in all star form already. Wieters, Reimold and Pie have to step it up, but our season will probably lie in how well the vets play. Tejada, BRob and Atkins have to be decent for us to succeed. If all our guys hit the way they are capable of we are going to put up A LOT of runs this year. Just hope our pitching can not give up MORE than we score, haha. Go O’s!!!

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