TORONTO -- Welcome to Rogers Centre, which promises to sound like a Justin Bieber concert this afternoon because it's "School Day" here, meaning the place will be overrun with amped-up kids for the rubber game of the Sox-Jays series.
In fact, my colleague Tim Britton of the Providence Journal, a rather young lad himself, notes that they just played Bieber and Selena Gomez songs back-to-back while the Sox were taking BP, a fact that would have escaped my demographic.
April 11 also happens to be Jason Varitek's 40th birthday, the first in what -- 35 years or so -- that Varitek isn't wearing somebody's uniform. The Red Sox were 7-6 in games played on Varitek's birthday while he was here -- where else are you going to get a stat like that?
Mike Aviles is back in the starting lineup after sitting with a slightly sprained ankle Tuesday. Dustin Pedroia caught a knee pretty hard sliding into third, but he told manager Bobby Valentine he's OK and was in the lineup. He took part in stretching and pregame BP.
Jon Lester is going for his first win after taking a no-decision in Boston's 3-2 Opening Day loss to the Tigers. Lester last pitched here Sept. 6 and turned in one of his best outings of the season -- seven scoreless innings in a 14-0 win in which he struck out a season-high 11. Regrettably for the Sox, that is the last game Lester won.