Terry Francona shakes up lineup for today’s game against Yankees

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This won’t be some magic elixir for the troubled Red Sox pitching staff, but Terry Francona has put together a new-look lineup for this afternoon’s game against the Yankees.

Here’s the lineup card, courtesy of the Boston Globe‘s Peter Abraham:

Ellsbury CF
Crawford LF
Pedroia 2B
Ortiz DH
Gonzalez 1B
Aviles 3B
Scutaro SS
Reddick RF
Saltalamacchia C

As for Crawford, this is his seventh start out of the No. 2 spot this season and his first since August 13. Meanwhile, Gonzalez hasn’t hit fifth since Opening Day.

While the Red Sox are just 5-16 in September, it hasn’t been on account of their offense. They enter play this afternoon averaging 5.81 runs per game this month.

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. saved by the ivy

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The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.

After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.

Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.