Saturday’s Red Sox-Yankees matchups: John Lackey vs. Hiroki Kuroda

April 12, 2014 - 5:08 am

The Red Sox will head into the second half of their four-game series with the Yankees on Saturday when John Lackey takes the mound against Hiroki Kuroda in the Bronx. In the very early goings of the 2014 season, Lackey has had the most success of any of the Red Sox starters. Lackey comes into Saturday'€™s start after giving up one unearned run on five hits over seven innings against the Rangers on April 7. Boston went on to win the game 5-1. "It'€™s been a lot of fastball action early on," Lackey, who is 2-0 with a 1.38 ERA, said after his outing against Texas. "So far, my arm has been feeling pretty good. I've been challenging guys and trying to get ahead in the count, and A.J. [Pierzynski] called a great game again for me tonight. I was able to get ahead and dictate some at-bats and it makes things go a little bit faster. "I definitely want to pound the strike zone. I want them to know that I'€™m going to throw strikes. If you'€™re going to get me, you better get me quick [in the count] because I'€™m coming after you, for sure. It can work both ways, if you'€™re not locating well, you can give it up pretty quick, too, that way. Just have to continue to locate and hopefully keep pitch counts down and get deep into games." Lackey last faced off against the Yankees and Kuroda on Sept. 13, 2013, when he did not factor into the decision after he gave up four runs on seven hits over 6 1/3 innings. He also gave up a solo home run to Brendan Ryan during the third. Kuroda eventually earned the loss after he gave up five runs on eight hits in six innings. Kuroda also comes into Saturday'€™s game after picking up a win in his most recent outing. The 39-year-old righty gave up two runs on eight hits in 6 1/3 innings on April 7 during the Yankees' 4-2 victory over the Orioles. Kuroda is 1-1 with a 2.92 ERA and a WHIP of 0.97 in two starts this season. Overall, Lackey has a 10-10 record in 27 starts against the Yankees with a 4.84 ERA and a WHIP of 1.49, and Kuroda has a 3-5 record in 12 starts vs. Boston with a 4.05 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP. Red Sox vs. Kuroda (RHP) Dustin Pedroia (32 plate appearances): .323 AVG/.344 OBP/.452 SLG, 1 double, 1 HR, 2 RBIs, 1 walk, 1 strikeout Daniel Nava (27): .348/.444/.478, 3 doubles, 2 RBIs, 2 strikeouts Mike Carp (21): .286/.286/.429, 3 doubles, 3 RBIs, 4 strikeouts David Ortiz (21): .588/.619/1.000, 4 doubles, 1 HR, 3 RBIs, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts Jonny Gomes (15): .154/.200/.154, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts A.J. Pierzynski (12): .167/.167/.417, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 strikeouts Mike Napoli (10): .333/.400/.333, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts Jackie Bradley Jr. (8): .000/.250/.000, 1 walk, 1 strikeout Jonathan Herrera (4): .667/.750/1.000, 1 double, 1 walk Ryan Roberts has one strikeout in two plate appearances vs. Kuroda. Yankees vs. Lackey (RHP) Ichiro Suzuki (120): .292/.333/.372, 6 doubles, 1 HR, 7 RBIs, 6 walks, 16 strikeouts Derek Jeter (79): .294/.377/.426, 6 doubles, 1 HR, 8 RBIs, 4 walks, 18 strikeouts Brian Roberts (45): .286/.333/.333, 2 doubles, 1 RBI, 3 walks, 6 strikeouts Alfonso Soriano (42): .158/.238/.184, 1 double, 4 walks, 9 strikeouts Brett Gardner (34): .355/.412/.516, 3 doubles, 1 triple, 4 RBIs, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts Kelly Johnson (15): .200/.200/.200, 2 RBIs, 2 strikeouts Carlos Beltran (12): .000/.167/.000, 1 RBI, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts Jacoby Ellsbury (10): .200/.200/.200, 2 strikeouts Francisco Cervelli (6): .600/.667/1.200, 1 HR, 1 RBI