Clay Buchholz's second start since returning to the Red Sox's rotation will be in his native state of Texas, as the righty will try to hold up in the heat in which he grew up pitching in Sunday's rubber match against the Rangers in Arlington.
This won't be an easy task for Buchholz, as the Rangers boast one of the best offenses in the American League and have a solid starting pitcher on the mound in righty Martin Perez.
Buchholz gave up a homer and a double to the White Sox in the first two pitches of his last start, but the righty settled down and generally pitched well in a 3-1 loss.
"We'll need him," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "I think, mentally, he's in a great place. I think he feels like there has been some momentum going in his favor. This is a tough lineup he'll have to face. They can stack left-handers, particularly in this ballpark, where mistakes aren't forgiven. I think we're looking forward to Clay continuing to build on the outings of late."
Perez is 6-2 with a 3.24 ERA over his last 10 starts. At a time the Rangers' pitching staff has been depleted by injuries, Perez and the other healthy pitchers will do what they can to keep the team's commanding lead in the AL West.
"We've got people that can do the job, too," said Perez. "We're just trying to focus on what we have to do and help the team. We can't control that situation right now. That's part of the game. I'm ready to do my job and I think everybody in this room is ready too."
Things to know about this game
• Red Sox slugger David Ortiz, who will retire at the end of the season, has always enjoyed hitting in Texas. His 19 homers at Globe Life Park are the second most he's hit in any non-American League East park, trailing only Comerica Park in Detroit. It was also the site of his first career homer, on Sept. 14, 1997.
• Perez will be looking to match his career-best winning streak of six games, which he set in 2013.
• Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus has fared well against Buchholz in his career, going 5-for-14 with a double. But Shin-Soo Choo has struggled, mustering two hits in 15 at-bats.