Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 5/6/13
The Red Sox are looking to put a less-than-productive weekend behind them coming into Monday night’s game against the Twins, and they’ll do so behind their best pitcher so far this year, Clay Buchholz, and a lineup eager to regain its spark. Shane Victorino returns to the Red Sox’ batting order, playing right field, after being given a day off at the end of Boston’s road trip to Texas. He had been out since April 24 with a back injury before returning May 3, and he went just 1-for-7 in Arlington before taking Sunday off. Victorino wasn’t the only member of the Red Sox who struggled over the weekend, though. Boston scored just four runs in its series against the Rangers, going 18-for-96 (.188) and 1-for-16 with runners in scoring position. A couple of players who will especially be looking to get back to form on friendly turf Monday night will be Will Middlebrooks (out Sunday; batting .195 with 36 strikeouts this season), Mike Napoli (1-for-10 in three games against the Rangers) and Dustin Pedroia (broke 0-for-14 slump with infield single Sunday). David Ortiz will also try to keep his torrid streak alive. He has recorded a hit in every game he’s played this year, including extra-base hits in 12 of his 13 appearances. His 25-game hitting streak, which stretches back to last year, was punctuated by a home run Sunday, his fourth of the year. Ortiz has also had some success against his original team — he’s batting .335 in 47 career games against the team that called him up in 1997 but cut him loose after 2002. The Red Sox’ bats appear to have the advantage in this once, as Minnesota’s Vance Worley (0-4, 7.22 ERA) goes opposite Buchholz (6-0, 1.01). This is also Buchholz’s first game since he was accused of doctoring the ball in Toronto. Here are the lineups for Monday night: Red Sox (20-11) Jacoby Ellsbury, CF Shane Victorino, RF Dustin Pedroia, 2B David Ortiz, DH Mike Napoli, 1B Daniel Nava, LF Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C Will Middlebrooks, 3B Stephen Drew, SS Clay Buchholz, P Twins (13-14) Brian Dozier, 2B Joe Mauer, C Josh Willingham, LF Justin Morneau, 1B Chris Parmelee, RF Trevor Plouffe, 3B Oswaldo Arcia, DH Aaron Hicks, CF Pedro Florimon, SS Vance Worley, P
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