The Red Sox have finally broken through in Game 3 of the ALCS against Tigers ace Justin Verlander.
Boston was held without a hit for 4 2/3 innings and scoreless for 6 1/3 innings, but first baseman Mike Napoli slugged a one-out solo homer to left in the top of the seventh to give the Red Sox a 1-0 lead.
Red Sox starting pitcher John Lackey has out-dueled Verlander so far, boasting eight strikeouts and no walks over six scoreless innings. Lackey has surrendered just three hits. He’s at 88 pitches as the bottom of the seventh inning gets underway at a cold and gray — but for the time being rainless — Comerica Park.
The best-of-seven American League Championship Series is currently tied 1-1.
The Blue Jays placed right-hander Aaron Sanchez on the 10-day disabled list with a contusion in his right index finger, per a team announcement on Saturday. The assignment is retroactive to Friday. In a corresponding move, righty Marcus Stroman was activated from the DL (right shoulder fatigue) and will take the mound for the Blue Jays at 9:07 PM ET tonight.
Sanchez, 25, is in his fifth season with the club. He hasn’t looked his sharpest so far this year, going 3-5 in 15 starts with a career-worst 4.52 ERA, 5.1 BB/9 and 7.6 SO/9 through 79 2/3 innings. It’s not yet clear how long he’ll be sidelined, though he could miss as little as one turn in the rotation before returning to the roster in the next week or two.
Sanchez isn’t the only struggling starter in Toronto’s rotation, either. Per MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm, the team placed southpaw Jaime Garcia on the DL (right shoulder tenderness) as well, with lefty reliever Tim Mayza scheduled to take his spot on the roster. In 13 starts this season, Garcia carried a 2-6 record, 6.16 ERA, 4.5 BB/9 and 8.2 SO/9 over 61 1/3 innings. Any further decisions pertaining to the rotation — including Tuesday’s starter against the Astros — have yet to be publicly addressed.