(SportsNetwork.com) – The Boston Red Sox welcome Justin Masterson back into
the fold on Thursday when they conclude their three-game season-opening series
with the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park.
Masterson started his career with the Red Sox and pitched parts of two seasons
there before being sent to Cleveland for Victor Martinez in 2009.
The 30-year-old sinkerballer was an All-Star for the Tribe in 2013, but
struggled last season and was eventually dealt to St. Louis at the non-waiver
trade deadline. He was 7-9 combined last season with a 5.88 ERA in 28 games
Masterson has faced the Phillies four times (2 starts) and is 1-1 against them
with a 5.56 ERA in just 11 1/3 innings.
Philadelphia will hand the ball to righty David Buchanan, who took on a bigger
role with the club once Cliff Lee went down with an injury. Buchanan made 20
starts for the Phillies in 2014 and was 6-8 with a 3.75 ERA.
Philadelphia picked up its first win of the season on Wednesday, as Aaron
Harang tossed 6 1/3 shutout innings in his Phillies debut and Jeff Francoeur
hit a three-run homer in a 4-2 win.
Harang (1-0) scattered two hits, walked just one and struck out eight for the
Phillies, who were shut out 8-0 in the series opener Monday.
“You don’t want to come in and be the goat,” Harang said of his Phillies
debut. “To be able to come in and be aggressive and get us deep in the game,
you know save the bullpen from any major innings, is always nice.”
Jonathan Papelbon posted a four-out save against his former team for his first
of the season.
Pablo Sandoval, who went 0-for-5 in his Red Sox debut, tallied two hits for
Boston. Rick Porcello (0-1) made his first start for Boston after being
acquired in a trade from Detroit during the offseason. He allowed three runs
on six hits and two walks over six frames.
“We mounted a couple of threats in the seventh and the eighth and came up
short,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said.