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BOS@BAL: Lackey fans six over six innings of work

The Rangers get their first crack at the defending World Series champions when they face the Red Sox in a three-game series that starts Monday at Fenway Park. This is Texas' only visit to Fenway this season.

The Rangers are 29-14 against the Red Sox since 2009, the best winning percentage of any Boston opponent in that span. They are also 13-8 over the past five years at Fenway. Adrian Beltre played for the Red Sox in 2010, but since signing with Texas, he is hitting .291 with five home runs and 18 RBIs against his former team.

"They're still nine tough innings there," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "I just hope we can pitch, get some hits, put some runs on the board and win some ballgames."

The Rangers will be facing a familiar foe. John Lackey will be on the mound for the Red Sox, making his 39th career start against the Rangers. That will tie him for the third-most against the Rangers since 1972. Jack Morris had 41 starts, Roger Clemens had 40 and Felix Hernandez and Mike Moore are at 39.

Lackey is 12-15 with a 6.01 ERA in his 38 starts. He is one of two pitchers who have at least 29 starts against the Rangers with a losing record. Among the 22 pitchers with at least 29 starts, the other with a losing record is Hernandez at 12-20.

Lackey's 6.01 ERA is the third-highest against the Rangers among opponents with at least 20 starts. Jon Garland had a 6.35 ERA and former Red Sox knuckleballer Tim Wakefield had a 6.22 ERA. It is also Lackey's highest ERA against any American League team.

The Red Sox lost both his starts against the Rangers last year, even though he had a combined 3.27 ERA in those games. He is still 2-6 with an 8.12 ERA in his last 12 games against Texas.

But teams change. Lackey has had success against a couple of current Rangers. Beltre is 13-for-61 (.213) with three home runs against Lackey, while Elvis Andrus is 5-for-28. That's a .179 batting average that is the second-lowest for Andrus facing any pitcher he's had 20 at-bats against. Shin-Soo Choo is 6-for-15 off Lackey, while Prince Fielder is 4-for-9.

About the Rangers
Andrus hit the club's second home run of the season when he went deep in the eighth inning Sunday. The only other home run by the Rangers was by Alex Rios in the third inning on Opening Day. Andrus didn't hit his first home run until Aug. 10 last year.

Through six games, the Rangers have a .267 team batting average, but they have just nine doubles and a triple to go with their two home runs. They have a .350 team slugging percentage after six games. Fielder is 4-for-24 with just one double batting in the No. 3 spot.

About the Red Sox
The Red Sox were swept by the Brewers this weekend and have lost their first three games at home. The last time that happened was in 1984 when they lost four in a row. The Red Sox had gone 9-0-3 in their last 12 Interleague Series.

The Red Sox were 53-28 at home in 2013 after going 34-47 at Fenway the year before. Boston has lost all four games this season when the opposition scored first.

Worth noting
• J.P. Arencibia has a career .145 average against Red Sox, seventh-lowest among active players with at least 50 plate appearances against them.

• In 112 career games and 418 at-bats, David Ortiz is hitting .292 with 29 home runs, 95 RBIs and a .577 slugging percentage against the Rangers.

• Rangers closer Joakim Soria earned his first save since Sept. 11, 2011, retiring the side in order against the Rays on Sunday afternoon. Comments