05/06/07 12:22 AM ET
Schilling gets the nod in finale
Boston (19-10) at Minnesota (16-14), 2:10 p.m. ET
By Pat Borzi / Special to MLB.com
Schilling hasn't faced the Twins much in his career, but the results have been spectacular -- 1-0 with four saves and a 1.03 ERA in nine appearances. The last time Schilling pitched at the Dome, he and Santana dueled to eight-inning no-decisions on June 13, 2006, an eventual 5-2 Twins victory decided by Jason Kubel's 12th-inning grand slam. In four appearances here, Schilling has allowed one earned run in 11 2/3 innings.
Oddly, Saturday marked the seventh time in 29 games the potent Sox lineup has been held to two or fewer runs. In this series, they have managed only three runs in two games. But the Sox could break out against Sidney Ponson, who has given up 40 hits and seven homers in five starts.
BOS: RHP Curt Schilling (3-1, 3.15)
Seemingly unaffected in his first start since the tiff over his 2004 American League Championship Series bloody sock, Schilling turned in another workmanlike effort against Oakland. He allowed two runs on eight hits over seven innings, walking none and striking out seven, but Jonathan Papelbon's first blown save cost him the victory. Since his subpar Opening Day outing in Kansas City, Schilling is 3-0 with a 2.25 ERA over five starts.
MIN: RHP Sidney Ponson (2-3, 6.67)
On Tuesday, after general manager Terry Ryan challenged him to pitch better, Ponson responded with his best outing since Spring Training. The right-hander gave up a single run to Tampa Bay over seven innings, his longest outing of the year. He was aggressive early, which he had not been in his four prior starts. As a result, Ponson fanned five and walked just two, throwing 90 pitches and lowering his 8.44 ERA nearly two full runs. But this is not a great matchup for Ponson, who is 3-10 with a 6.69 ERA in 19 career starts against Boston.
Player to watch
Manny Ramirez is 11-for-25 (.440) in his six-game hitting streak, with three homers and six RBIs.
NESN On radio
680 WRKO Up next
Tuesday: Red Sox (RHP Josh Beckett, 6-0, 2.72) at Blue Jays (RHP Victor Zambrano, 0-1, 5.63), 7:07 p.m. ET
Wednesday: Red Sox (RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka, 3-2, 5.45) at Blue Jays (TBA), 7:07 p.m. ET
Thursday: Red Sox (RHP Tim Wakefield, 3-3, 2.11) at Blue Jays (RHP Roy Halladay, 4-1, 3.59), 7:07 p.m. ET
Pat Borzi is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.