Friday's Red Sox-Yankees matchups: Jon Lester vs. CC Sabathia

May 31, 2013 - 7:36 am

The Red Sox will head to Yankee Stadium for the second time this season, sending ace Jon Lester to the mound against big left-hander CC Sabathia. Lester has thrown a couple of outstanding games this season. He'€™s also had to work hard to get through some starts. Regardless, Lester has been a consistent force in the Red Sox rotation, coming into the series with a 6-1 record and 3.34 ERA. Lester labored through his last outing, allowing four runs on a season-high 10 hits to the Indians while striking out a season-high eight and throwing a season-high 124 pitches. A wild pitch allowing the fourth run to score would ultimately cost Lester the chance to pick up his seventh win of the year (he did not factor in the decision). The Sox lefty earned his first win of the year against the Yankees on Opening Day, going five innings and allowing two runs on five hits and two walks while striking out seven. Lester owns a lifetime 4.08 ERA against New York but has found ways to beat the Yankees on a regular basis, bringing a 10-4 record in 23 career games against them. Lester is 7-2 with a 4.14 ERA pitching in the new Yankee Stadium. Lester will be opposed by Sabathia, who hasn'€™t quite pitched like an ace in his last few games. In his previous three starts, he'€™s allowed 14 runs and 29 hits in 19 2/3 innings. His most recent start was not only his worst of the season but one of his worst outings in a Yankees uniform. The lefty allowed seven runs on eight hits in seven innings to the Rays, walking one and striking out five. The last time Sabathia allowed seven or more runs in a game was Aug. 8, 2011, in Boston, when the Red Sox tagged Sabathia for seven runs on nine hits in six innings. "I'€™m hurting the team," Sabathia said after his last outing. "I'€™m not helping the team out. I just need to get better. I'€™ve been through bad stretches in my career, but it'€™s tough. '€¦ It'€™s just one of those things where you'€™ve got to keep working, keep going and believe that you'€™re going to get better." Through 11 starts in 2013, Sabathia owns a 4-4 record with a 3.96 ERA and a 1.321 WHIP. It'€™s the first time since 2008 that Sabathia has had a .500 record or worse two months into the season. The Yankees ace hasn'€™t won since April 27, factoring into only two decisions this month with both of them being losses. The Red Sox have already seen Sabathia once this year, scoring four runs on eight hits in five innings off him on Opening Day and handing him his first loss. The Sox have hit Sabathia relatively hard over the course of his career; the starter is 8-10 with a 4.33 ERA in 23 games against Boston. Red Sox vs. Sabathia (LHP) David Ortiz (53 plate appearances): .224 BA/.283 OBP/.367 SLG, 2 HR, 1 double, 4 RBI, 3 walks, 15 strikeouts Dustin Pedroia (45): .275/.356/.300, 1 double, 2 RBI, 4 walks, 13 strikeouts Jacoby Ellsbury (35): .226/.286/.355, 1 HR, 1 double, 7 RBI, 1 walk, 9 strikeouts Jonny Gomes (32): .231/.375/.269, 1 double, 2 RBI, 4 walks, 8 strikeouts Mike Napoli (25): .190/.320/.381, 1 HR, 1 double, 4 RBI, 3 walks, 4 strikeouts Jarrod Saltalamacchia (19): .250/.316/.375, 2 doubles, 1 RBI, 2 walks, 8 strikeouts David Ross (16): .308/.375/.769, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 walks, 4 strikeouts Pedro Ciriaco (7): .286/.286/.286, 1 strikeout Daniel Nava (7): .286/.286/.714, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 strikeouts Mike Carp (6): .000/.167/.000, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts Jose Iglesias (6): .333/.333/.333, 1 RBI Jackie Bradley (3): .000/.667/.000, 2 walks, 1 strikeout Stephen Drew (3): .667/.667/.667 Yankees vs. Lester (LHP) Robinson Cano (65): .233/.277/.300, 4 doubles, 5 RBI, 4 walks, 13 strikeouts Vernon Wells (48): .158/.313/.289, 1 HR, 2 doubles, 3 RBI, 8 walks, 6 strikeouts Ichiro Suzuki (39): .316/.333/.474, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts Lyle Overbay (28): .360/.429/.680, 2 HR, 2 doubles, 8 RBI, 3 walks, 6 strikeouts Jayson Nix (26): .304/.360/.783, 3 HR, 2 doubles, 5 RBI, 2 walks, 7 strikeouts Travis Hafner (14): .231/.214/.231, 3 RBI, 2 walks Brennan Boesch (13): .231/.231/.385, 1 triple, 2 RBI, 4 strikeouts Brett Gardner (9): .222/.222/.222, 2 strikeouts Chris Stewart (4): .500/.333/2.000, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 strikeout David Adams, Reid Brignac and Austin Romine have not faced Lester.