Oakland (46-36) at Boston (45-37)

Light Rain Currently: Boston, MA
Temp: 43° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Thu Jul 8, 2004
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Curt Schilling will make his final start before the All-Star break as the resurgent Boston Red Sox try to complete a three-game sweep of the Oakland Athletics.

Schilling was acquired by Boston in a trade from Arizona this past offseason, and has continued the dominance that made him one of the National League’s most overpowering pitchers. The right-hander earned a spot in baseball’s midsummer classic by winning 11 of his first 15 decisions in a Boston uniform.

Schilling has been even more dominant at home, going 7-0 with a 2.48 ERA in nine starts at Fenway Park.

On Saturday, he pitched the Red Sox to a 6-1 victory at Atlanta, limiting the Braves to a run and six hits while tossing his second complete game of the year. Schilling struck out a season high-tying 10 and walked only one.

Schilling has emerged as Boston’s stopper as well. Each of his last four victories have followed a Red Sox loss.

“On this club I didn’t expect to be stopping a lot of streaks,” said Schilling, who boasts a 7-1 mark in his last nine starts.

The Red Sox lost five of six before rolling over the A’s in the first two games of this series. Boston has outscored Oakland 22-3, including an 11-3 rout on Wednesday.

Pedro Martinez pitched seven strong innings and Nomar Garciaparra, Manny Ramirez and Mark Bellhorn homered as Boston moved within six games of the first-place New York Yankees in the AL East.

The Red Sox also pulled within a game of the A’s in a potential AL wild-card race.

The A’s have dropped consecutive games for the first time since a four-game skid from June 19-22. Oakland slipped one game behind first-place Texas in the AL West.

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Starting Pitchers

R. Harden Min vs. C. Schilling Bos
11-7 Record 21-6
3.99 ERA 3.26
167 K 203
81 BB 35
1.33 WHIP 1.06