Allen Webster

Thursday's Red Sox-Astros matchups: Allen Webster vs. Scott Feldman

August 14, 2014 - 4:58 am

The Red Sox return to Fenway Park on Thursday night to begin a four-game series against the Astros. The Sox begin the 11-game homestand by sending Allen Webster to the mound against Scott Feldman.

After a troubling outing against the Yankees in which he lasted just 2 2/3 innings and walked six batters, Webster (2-1, 4.91 ERA) came back with arguably the best outing of his short major league career last Friday. The 24-year-old went a career-high 6 2/3 innings, allowing just two runs on four hits in a 4-2 win over the Angels. He walked two and struck out three.

Webster's start Friday is a step in the right direction after the rookie posted an 8.22 ERA in his first 10 major league appearances. Perhaps the most encouraging sign was the low walk total after after he issued 11 free passes in his first eight innings this season.

"I just started going after batters," Webster said after the game. "After every single pitch, I told myself to just trust my stuff and let it work. Let my defense work behind me."

Webster has never faced the Astros in his career. His only experience against a National League opponent came in a start against the Padres on July 4, 2013. Webster allowed two runs on five hits over six innings in an 8-2 Red Sox win.

Feldman (6-8, 4.14 ERA) has been one of the Astros' most reliable starters as of late. The righty is 2-0 with a 1.39 ERA in his last three outings and has had seven quality starts in his last nine. His below-.500 record is indicative of that of a pitcher on a bad team. 

Feldman was effective in his outing against the Rangers last Saturday, allowing three runs on eight hits in an 8-3 win. The 31-year-old walked one and struck out six over 6 1/3 innings to win consecutive starts for the first time since his first two starts of the season.

"I just ran out of gas there at the end," Feldman said after the game. "For the most part of the game, I felt pretty good and felt pretty similar to my last three games and hopefully I can continue with that."

Feldman was roughed up in his first outing against the Red Sox this season. He gave up seven runs on 11 hits in 5 1/3 innings in an 8-3 loss to the Sox July 11. The outing dropped Feldman to 1-3 with a 6.64 ERA in 12 career games (six starts) against the Red Sox.

Astros vs. Webster (RHP)

No Astros have faced Webster.

Red Sox vs. Feldman (RHP)

Mike Napoli (32 plate appearances): .414 AVG/.469 OBP/.655 SLG, 2 HR, 1 double, 7 RBIs, 3 walks, 6 strikeouts

Dustin Pedroia (20): .400/.400/.600, 1 HR, 1 double, 3 RBIs, 1 strikeout

David Ortiz (18): .200/.333/.600, 2 HR, 7 RBIs, 3 walks, 1 strikeout

Yoenis Cespedes (11): .375/.545/.625, 2 doubles, 1 RBI, 3 walks, 1 strikeout

Kelly Johnson (9): .222/.222/.333, 1 double, 1 RBI, 2 strikeouts

Daniel Nava (8): .500/.500/.875, 1 HR, 3 RBIs, 1 strikeout

Xander Bogaerts (5): .000/.200/.000, 1 RBI, 1 walk

Will Middlebrooks (4): .250/.250/.500, 1 double, 1 strikeout

Jackie Bradley (3): .667/.667/.667, 1 strikeout

Brock Holt (3): .667/.667/1.667, 1 triple, 1 double, 1 RBI

Christian Vazquez (3): 1.000/1.000/1.667, 2 double, 3 RBIs