Blue Jays at Red Sox
The All-Star break did little to jump-start the offense of the American League East-leading Boston Red Sox, who have dropped seven of 10 games and failed to score more than three runs in any of the losses. Boston has scored in only four of its last 42 innings as it continues a four-game series against the visiting Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday night.
The inability to get a clutch hit has plagued the Red Sox, although Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedroia delivered back-to-back hits with runners in scoring position Monday after Boston was 5-for-68 in such situations. "We'll look to do some things to shake it up a little bit," Red Sox manager told reporters of his lineup following Monday's 4-3 defeat. The Blue Jays are tied with Baltimore for last place in the AL East but are just 4 1/2 games behind the New York Yankees for the second wild card. First baseman Steve Pearce has hit safely in seven of eight games for Toronto after belting a homer and delivering the game-winning RBI single in the series opener.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, Sportsnet, TVA Sports (Toronto), NESN (Boston)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Blue Jays LH J.A. Happ (3-6, 3.54 ERA) vs. Red Sox LH Brian Johnson (2-0, 4.29)
Happ went into the All-Star break off a clunker, getting tagged for six runs (two earned) and surrendering three homers over four innings in a 19-1 shellacking by Houston. The 34-year-old had turned in five straight quality starts prior to that ugly outing, going 3-1 and allowing a combined seven runs in that span. Happ has held Boston's Betts, Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr. to a combined 5-for-43.
Johnson pitched a gem in a spot start versus Seattle on May 27, throwing a five-hit shutout to earn the win. He faced the Blue Jays in his season debut at Toronto on April 18 and earned the victory despite a shaky performance in which he gave up a pair of homers and four runs in five innings. He had a pair of no-decisions five days apart in June, giving up six runs and 12 hits over only seven innings.
1. Blue Jays RF Jose Bautista is 2-for-23 in his last seven games and SS Troy Tulowitzki 2-for-20 in his last five.
2. Red Sox LF Andrew Benintendi is 8-for-24 against Toronto this season.
3. Blue Jays DH Kendrys Morales is 5-for-10 during a three-game hitting streak.