Joe Kelly

Saturday’s Red Sox-Athletics Matchups: Joe Kelly vs. Jesse Chavez

June 06, 2015 - 4:47 am

In the second game of a three-game set at Fenway, the Red Sox will send Joe Kelly to the hill to take on Jesse Chavez of the Athletics.

For Kelly, the first two months of the campaign have been rocky at best. The flame-throwing right-hander is 1-4 with a 5.83 ERA through his first 10 starts. With the emergence of young southpaw Eduardo Rodriguez, the Sox are currently carrying six starters in their rotation.

Manager John Farrell has indicated that he wants to return to a five-man rotation, which means that, as long as Rodriguez continues to perform, it seems like either Kelly or Steven Wright soon will lose their spot.

With that in mind, Kelly, 28, may be pitching for his starting spot on Saturday as he takes on the A's. The entirety of Kelly's season has been an up-and-down affair, and his last start was a relative peak.

Against the Rangers on Sunday, Kelly took a no-decision in a Red Sox loss but pitched a solid game. Kelly threw five innings and allowed two runs, just one of them earned. Kelly surrendered six hits and walked two.

The outing certainly was an improvement from the 1 2/3 innings and seven earned runs Kelly allowed in his previous outing.

"There's no denying the stuff. It's a matter of consistent location with his fastball,'€ Farrell said of Kelly. "When he's in those games where the runs have come about, it's typically been mislocated fastballs that found their way to the plate."

Kelly has only one career appearance against the Athletics, pitching 5 1/3 innings in relief allowing just one run. His ERA against the A's is 1.69.

Chavez, like Kelly a right-hander, has had some tough luck this season, working to a 2-5 record while holding a 2.11 ERA and 1.039 WHIP.

Chavez started the season in the bullpen, making four scoreless appearances in April before being moving back into a starting role. Since then, he has made eight starts. In those outings, Chavez has a 2.38 ERA and opponents are hitting just .221 against him.

Chavez has had some unfortunate losses, thanks in part to his team's lack of offensive support. In his starts, he has received just 2.03 runs of support per 27 outs.

He got his second win of the year last time out Sunday against the Yankees, pitching eight shutout innings. The right-hander allowed just seven hits and didn't walk a batter while striking out six in a 3-0 A's victory.

"I was thinking to myself we have not scored any runs for this guy all year," A's catcher Stephen Vogt said following the game. '€œWe knew today all he needed was one run. That's the kind of day it was for him on the mound. To get him a couple of runs was huge. He was just some kind of awesome today."

In four career outings against the Red Sox (one of them a start), Chavez has an ERA of 0.73, having surrendered just one run across 12 1/3 innings of work.

A's vs. Kelly (RHP)

Billy Butler (4 plate appearances): .250 AVG/.250 OBP/.250 SLG

Jesse Hahn is 0-for-2 with two strikeouts against Kelly.

Josh Reddick is 0-for-2 with a strikeout against Kelly.

Eric Sogard (2): .000/.500/.000, 1 walk, 1 strikeout

Stephen Vogt (2): .500/.500/2.000, 1 home run, 1 RBI

No other A's have faced Kelly.

Red Sox vs. Chavez (RHP)

Mike Napoli (8): .286/.375/1.000, 1 home run, 1 triple, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts

Hanley Ramirez (6): .167/.167/.167, 1 strikeout

Alejandro De Aza is 0-for-5 with a strikeout against Chavez.

David Ortiz (5): .250/.400/1.000, 1 home run, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 1 strikeout

Dustin Pedroia (5): .200/.200/.200

Brock Holt (4): .333/.500/.333, 1 walk

Pablo Sandoval (2): 1.000/1.000/1.000, 1 RBI

No other Red Sox have faced Chavez.