Your Milwaukee Brewers salvaged a road trip split on Sunday with their win against the Pirates. They now return home for a six-game home stand, starting with their first home interleague series of the season.
The Boston Red Sox are coming off a series in which they murdered the poor Minnesota Twins. After the Twins stole the series opener 4-3 on Friday night, Boston unloaded for an 11-1 win on Saturday and a 17-6 win on Sunday.
It's safe to say the Red Sox can hit a little bit. Xander Bogaerts comes into the series with a .340/.393/.417 line. Everyone's favorite preseason AL Rookie of the Year pick, Andrew Benintendi, his hitting .325/.385/.500 and leads the team with 5 home runs, 20 RBI, and 60 total bases. Mitch Moreland jumped from Texas to Boston in the offseason and is now hitting .281/.369/.465 with 15 doubles. For the sake of comparison, Travis Shaw leads the Brewers with 9 doubles.
Speaking of Shaw, it's safe to say he's looking foward to this series. He comes into the series with an .847 OPS, thanks to those doubles and 7 home runs. Meanwhile, Pablo Sandoval is off to another disappointing start in Boston, hitting just .213/.269/.377 and will miss this series after landing on the DL with a sprained knee. Tyler Thornburg has yet to throw a pitch for the Red Sox, and was recently transferred to the 60-day DL with his shoulder injury, meaning he'll be out until at least mid-June. It's safe to say that trade has not gone well for Boston.
Despite that, there are still plenty of good hitters up and down the Boston lineup. Between these two offenses, I'm fully expecting each game to last 4 hours. The bullpen hasn't really needed Thornburg, either, with Heath Hembree (1.15 ERA/1.66 FIP), Joe Kelly (2.25 ERA/3.81 FIP) and Craig Kimbrel (1.29 ERA/0.86) being virtually impossible to beat in the last few innings so far this year.
At least the Brewers catch a break and won't have to face Chris Sale this week.
Tuesday, 6:40 p.m. CDT, FS Wisconsin - Drew Pomeranz vs. Wily Peralta
Pomeranz was a disappointment for the Red Sox last year, putting up a 4.59 ERA/4.78 FIP after a deadline deal brought him in from San Diego. He's off to a better start this year, with a 3.89 FIP in 5 starts to this point and a ridiculous 11.3 K/9 that's about 2.5 strikeouts above his career average. In what might be good news for Shaw and Eric Thames, the lefty actually has a pretty sizable reverse platoon split in his small 5-start sample size so far, allowing a .348/.400/.565 line against LHB so far (only 25 PA), as opposed to a .202/.264/.405 line from RHB. Considering the .207/.289/.291 line he's allowed against lefties for his career, I wouldn't expect that to continue, but hey, we can hope for at least one more out of the norm outing.
Wednesday, 6:40 p.m. CDT, FS Wisconsin - Kyle Kendrick vs. Chase Anderson
Kendrick is filling in for knuckleballer Steven Wright, who underwent season-ending knee surgery last week. Kendrick's first start for the Red Sox didn't go well, maybe a sign why he hadn't pitched in the majors since 2015. He allowed 6 runs on 8 hits in just 4 innings against the Orioles on May 4. It might be brutally honest, but Kyle Kendrick is no longer a major league caliber pitcher and has not been one for some time. With that said, he does have a career 4.29 ERA against the Brewers in 11 career games (8 starts), so it's entirely possible he goes 6 IP allowing only 3 ER on Wednesday night.
Thursday, 12:10 p.m. CDT, FS Wisconsin - Eduardo Rodriguez vs. Jimmy Nelson
The Red Sox are probably second only to the Cubs on the List Of Teams I Don't Want To See Jimmy Nelson Face, and here we are. Rodriguez is another Boston lefty carrying some astronomical strikeout numbers, coming into this week with an 11.35 K/9 and an overall K% of 30.3%. That's before he's had the benefit of facing the Brewers. He does have a 4.60 BB/9, though, so if the Brewers can stretch out some at-bats, the trade-off might be worth it, even if they end up with their fair share of whiffs. Rodriguez hasn't pitched in more than 6 innings in a start yet this year.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference and Fangraphs