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Monday morning game thread: @ Red Sox, 11:05

The Orioles haven’t lost a road series yet in 2019. They’ll need to win today to keep it that way.

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Boston Red Sox Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Who’s up for some Monday morning sports action? Skip your work meeting, grab a cup of coffee, get some brunch, and follow along with us as the Orioles play baseball at a time of day when baseball should never be played. It’s the annual Patriots’ Day game in Boston, so let’s hope the Orioles are bright-eyed and bushy-tailed for their 11:05 contest.

The O’s will need a win to salvage a split of the four-game set. They were originally slated to face Chris Sale, but the Sox opted to give him an extra day of rest and push him to Tuesday against the Yankees. Left unsaid, but clearly true, is that Chris Sale was terrified to face the Orioles. Just admit it, Chris.

Instead, Hector Velazquez will make the start for Boston, pitching in front of a bizarre Red Sox lineup. With the club racked by injuries to Andrew Benintendi, Jackie Bradley Jr., and an active-but-still-not-fully-healthy Dustin Pedroia, the Sox will be starting Christian Vazquez — normally a catcher — at second base. Vazquez has played there just once in his professional career, for 4.2 innings with Single-A Greenville in 2010. Tip for O’s hitters: if you must hit the ball on the ground, try to hit it to second.

The Orioles will counter with Dan Straily, making his second start as an Oriole. Let’s hope it goes much better than his first, when he coughed up five runs in 3.1 innings vs. Oakland. Dwight Smith Jr., who didn’t start Sunday because of a sore right leg, is back in the O’s lineup.

Orioles lineup:

2B Jonathan Villar
RF Trey Mancini
LF Dwight Smith Jr.
3B Rio Ruiz
DH Renato Nunez
1B Chris Davis
C Jesus Sucre
SS Richie Martin
CF Cedric Mullins

RHP Dan Straily

Red Sox lineup:

DH Dustin Pedroia
CF Mookie Betts
1B Mitch Moreland
RF J.D. Martinez
SS Xander Bogaerts
3B Rafael Devers
LF Steve Pearce
C Blake Swihart
2B Christian Vazquez

RHP Hector Velazquez