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07/17/10 2:07 AM ET

New Ranger Lee meets Texan Lackey at Fenway

The new Ranger and a familiar Texan will square off Saturday night in Boston, when Cliff Lee and John Lackey take the hill.

The eyes of the Lone Star State will be upon them.

In his first start for the Rangers on Saturday against the Orioles, Lee took the loss after giving up six runs on nine hits with two strikeouts. He still threw a complete game on only 95 pitches.

"I'll take that same game ... minus the six runs," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "Pound the strike zone, keep the ball in play and get the guys off the field. Hopefully we can score him some runs."

Lee is also hoping for run support. He is 2-4 in nine career starts against the Red Sox.

Another complete game would put Lee in elite company. The other two pitchers who have thrown complete games in their first two starts in a Texas uniform are Ferguson Jenkins (1974) and Mike Smith (1982).

As for Lackey, he is looking to improve from a first half that saw opponents hit .298 against him. He will have the home-field advantage working in his favor Saturday.

Overall, the tall Texan has pitched better at Fenway Park (7-2, 4.45 ERA) than on the road (2-3, 5.19).

He has not faced the Rangers this season.

"I've usually been a better second-half pitcher," Lackey said. "It doesn't mean a lot this year, but I'm confident going into the second half, for sure."

Rangers: Hot Hamilton shakes off tight muscle
Josh Hamilton is 10-for-19 in his last seven games, and he has hit safely in 10 of his last 12 games. He left Thursday's game with tightness in a muscle behind his right knee and went 0-for-4 Friday ... Michael Young is now tied with Juan Gonzalez for the second-most runs in team history with 878. ... Texas relievers rank among the Major League leaders with 19 relief wins, matching their total for all of 2009. ... Outfielder Brandon Boggs (wrist) has been activated off the disabled list at Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Red Sox: Pedroia takes step toward return
Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia was cleared to begin weight-bearing drills Friday. He will wear a specialty shoe created for him by New Balance, which he was fitted for before Friday's game. ... Clay Buchholz is expected to re-join Boston's rotation for Wednesday afternoon's game at Oakland. He made his final rehab start Friday. ... Manager Terry Francona said the Red Sox would activate pitcher Manny Delcarmen from the disabled list on Saturday. He pitched one inning of scoreless ball for Double-A Portland on Thursday.

Worth noting
The Red Sox will formally launch Wally's World at Fenway Park, a new family-friendly play area for children, with a ribbon-cutting on Yawkey Way on Saturday. ... The Red Sox have hit 28 home runs in their last 18 games. ... The Sox have notched 10 or more hits in three of their last six and seven of 14 games. ... Rangers outfielder Endy Chavez (knee) was placed on DL at Triple-A Oklahoma City. ... Texas is 8-15 against the AL East this season. ... Rangers have been successful on their last 34 steal tries against the Red Sox since Chris Davis was caught on August 14, 2008, at Fenway Park.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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