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Weekly Baseball Preview
by Matt Fargo - 06/30/2008
Monday, June 30th
Boston Red Sox at Tampa Bay Rays 7:10 PM ET
Interleague play is done and we can turn our attention to some big league games this week starting with a great series getting underway Monday. Boston heads to Tampa Bay as the two meet for the first time since June 5th and that infamous brawl. James Shields started that game and was tossed after just one inning and he will get a crack at the Red Sox once again. He shut them out at home earlier this season on just two hits and the home team is now 9-0 in the nine meetings played thus far this season.
Tuesday, July 1st
Oakland Aâ€™s at Los Angeles Angels 10:05 PM ET
Another great A.L. series continues Tuesday as the Aâ€™s look to keep pace out west with the Angels. They enter the week four and a half games back and send one of the hottest pitchers in baseball to the hill in this one. Rich Harden has tossed seven quality starts in his last eight games and it would be 8-8 but he was a third of an inning short in one of those. Harden has yet to lose this season. Not to be outdone, Ervin Santana is 9-3 with a 3.32 ERA on the year and he is 8-1 with a 1.38 ERA in 11 career starts against Oakland.
Wednesday, July 2nd
Detroit Tigers at Minnesota Twins 1:10 PM ET
The three-game set between the Tigers and Twins concludes on Wednesday afternoon. This is a big series for the visitors as Detroit has somehow gotten itself back into the American League Central race. Entering the week, the Tigers are on a five-game winning streak and are 17-4 over their last 21 games. The Twins are hot as well as they have won 10 of their last 11 games heading into this series. Minnesota has won five of the last six meetings including a sweep at the Metrodome back in early May.
Thursday, July 3rd
Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees 7:05 PM ET
It really wouldnâ€™t be 4th of July without the Red Sox and Yankees squaring off. Game One of this four-game series is Thursday and with the Yankees starting to show some life, this series is going to be a big one. Andy Pettitte takes the hill for New York and he is 15-6 with a 3.45 ERA in 27 career starts against Boston. Meanwhile Jon Lester counters for the Red Sox and he has faced the Yankees only once. Last season, he was shelled for seven runs in just 3.2 innings.
Friday, July 4th
Chicago Cubs at St. Louis Cardinals 8:15 PM ET
The holiday is filled with action day and night and one of the best matchups takes place Friday night with the Cubs taking on the Cardinals in the first game of this weekend series. St. Louis is the closest pursuer in the National League Central as it came into the new week trailing Chicago by just 2.5 games. This is just the second series between these two rivals as the Cardinals took two of three in the first set back in early May. Chicago has been nearly unbeatable at home but is struggling on the road with six straight losses.