8 a.m. ET: After splitting the two games that comprised Monday’s split-squad action, we’d say that the Red Sox are looking to bounce back — except for the fact that no one really cares about results and scores at this time of the year.
However, the games still matter, in a sense, and they definitely still matter to someone like Ryan Dempster (12-8, 3.38 in 2012), who will be looking to make an impression upon his new teammates with his first start in a Red Sox uniform. Dempster gets the call on Tuesday, and he’ll be looking for about two innings or about 30 pitches worth of work.
On the other end, Jaime Garcia (7-7, 3.92 in 2012) gets the ball for the St. Louis Cardinals, who’s trying to bounce back from a shoulder malady that limited him to 20 trips to the hill in 2012. Normally teams avoid pitchers with shoulder injuries the way Manti Te’o avoids the film Catfish, but apparently the Cardinals believe Garcia’s fully recovered from his health woes. The team’s counting on the 26-year-old to hold down a rotation spot, which is largely the reason St. Louis doesn’t have an interest in free agent Kyle Lohse.
Anyway, there’s no telling who will be on the field in a game this early in the spring, so we’ll bring you the lineups and, as Vin Scully would say, “all the stats and stories” from Fort Myers leading up to first pitch. And, if you’re so inclined, you can follow this live blogger at @ZachStoloff for witty quips like the one above, or to chat Red Sox and all things MLB any time.