Red Sox send Dempster to mound against Rays

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Updated: September 11, 2013

(Sports Network) – Ryan Dempster tries to win his third straight start on
Wednesday when the Boston Red Sox continue a three-game series with the Tampa
Bay Rays at Tropicana Field.

Dempster has won both of his starts since serving a five-game suspension for
hitting New York’s Alex Rodriguez and is 8-9 on the year with a 4.79 ERA. He
beat the Detroit Tigers last Wednesday, but was not sharp, as he allowed four
runs and six hits in six innings.

Luckily, though, the Red Sox scored 20 runs.

Dempster has faced the Rays 10 times and is 3-5 with a 3.94 ERA.

Tampa Bay will counter with righty Alex Cobb, who is 8-3 with a 2.99 ERA. Cobb
did not get a decision in Seattle on Friday, as he surrendered four runs and
seven hits in six innings. He also struck out five and walked a batter in his
team’s 6-4 loss.

Cobb is 2-2 in six starts versus the Red Sox with a 4.09 ERA.

Boston put even more distance between itself and the Rays in Tuesday’s opener,
as Clay Buchholz tossed five scoreless innings in his first start in more than
three months to lead the Red Sox to a 2-0 win.

Buchholz (10-0) returned to the mound for the first time since June 8 and gave
up three hits and one walk with six strikeouts. The 29-year-old right-hander
had been sidelined by neck stiffness, but picked up right where he left off
and won his fourth consecutive start dating back to May 22.

“To see him walk to the mound, I think it gave everybody a boost in
confidence,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said of Buchholz.

Koji Uehara continued his recent string of dominance by posting a four-out
save, his 19th of the season.

Jonny Gomes and Jarrod Saltalamacchia drove in runs for the Red Sox, winners
in six of their last seven and owners of an 8 1/2-game lead over the Rays in
the AL East.

David Price (8-8) fared well in defeat, allowing only two runs on three hits
with nine strikeouts over eight full frames, for the Rays, who have lost four
of five, but still hold the second wild card spot in the AL.

“We’ve got 19 games left, so you go now or we won’t be hanging around in
October,” Price said.

The Red Sox are 11-6 versus the Rays this season.