He’s only gotten better after his career-threatening illnesses; how is that possible?
The Red Sox, their bats awakened in the Friday Texas twilight, will look to take the series lead against the Rangers behind Eduardo Rodriguez tonight in Arlington (7:05 p.m., NESN, MLBN out-of-market).
E-Rod looks to continue a run of increasingly great starts, which, after his COVID-19 and myocarditis diagnoses last year, are something of a miracle, writes FanGraphs’s Carmen Ciardiello:
He has come back and become a markedly more aggressive pitcher. So far the strategy has worked and helped him get to those precious two-strike counts, a vital step to posting a higher strikeout rate. And by living so often in the zone, hitters are forced to swing at Rodriguez’s offerings more often and rarely get into advantageous three ball counts. His swing rate against is almost six percentage points higher than in previous seasons, with the uptick in swinging strike percentage as a cherry on top.
Sounds delicious. Hopefully he’ll find good eating against a Rangers lineup that struggles to put runs on the board. He’ll be opposed by Jordan Lyles, who enters the game with an ERA over 6, which has to look pretty sweet to the Sox.
Kiké Hernández is again out of the lineup, with Christian Arroyo playing second and batting leadoff. Just like yesterday. In fact, the lineup is identical to yesterday’s, which I believe marks the first time this year they’ve sent the same guys out there for consecutive days. The Rangers go back to largely what helped them win on Thursday, which is a lineup absent Brock Holt. The sleeper agent sleeps again. Rats.