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Alex Cora clarifies who is pitching where for homestretch

Rob Bradford
September 19, 2018 - 5:39 pm

NEW YORK -- After some confusion Tuesday, Alex Cora used Wednesday's pregame meeting with the media to clarify what the plan was for Chris Sale over his final two regular season starts.

Cora noted that Sale would be pitching Friday in Cleveland against the Indians and then again Wednesday at Fenway Park vs. Baltimore. 

The schedule allows Sale to miss the Yankees, a team the Red Sox could line up against in the American League Division Series.

Also of note was Cora's plan to pitch Nathan Eovaldi out of the bullpen in what figures to be Rick Porcello's final start of the season, Sept. 28 vs. New York.

"I think we’re going to team up Nate and Rick probably that last weekend using Nate out of the bullpen that Friday, I think it is the way it’s lining up," the Red Sox manager said. "It’s going to be Sale on Friday, Rick on Saturday, somebody will start on Sunday then Nate then David (Price), then Chris against Baltimore. Then it should be Porcello, Eduardo (Rodriguez) and then we’ll see."

While there are still no guarantees Eovaldi will be pitching out of the bullpen when the postseason rolls around, Cora thinks any sort of transition will go smoothly.

"We saw it already," said Cora of Eovaldi working as a reliever. "It’s funny because he stopped by the office to stop by the schedule, what’s next. With him it doesn’t really matter. He’s a strong kid. He’s still going to be throwing 99, 100 whether he starts or comes out of the bullpen. He did it already. We know he can do it. He’ll start Monday and then we’ll team him up with somebody over the weekend. It’s kind of like to keep him sharp.

"First of all, we don’t know who we’re going to play. We're getting ahead of ourselves and you guys know I hate to get ahead of myself. If we win the division we don't know who we're going to play. Who matches up better against these guys, Oakland or the Rays the way things are going. We'll take a look at it. It's to keep him sharp and they don't have that long rest between that one start and the start of the playoffs."