Matchup: Felix Doubrant's curve vs. Texas

ESPN Stats and Information's John Fisher took a look at one important thing to watch tonight as the Boston Red Sox and starter Felix Doubrant take on the Texas Rangers (7 p.m. on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and ESPN): the curve ball. Here's part of Fisher's post on the Stats & Info blog:

Doubront’s biggest weapon is his curveball. Only C.C. Sabathia and Justin Verlander have allowed a lower batting average against their curveball among qualified AL starters.

That pitch may not work as well in this game. The Rangers have two of the American League’s top five hitters in batting average against curveballs. Ian Kinsler is third (.409) and Michael Young is fifth (.371).

Against curveballs this season, Josh Hamilton leads the majors with six home runs, he and Kinsler are tied for the major league lead with 18 hits apiece and Hamilton’s .667 slugging percentage against the curve is seventh-best in the American League.

Doubrant does have a good record on the road and he seems to get plenty of offensive support when he pitches. So we'll see which trends hold tonight. But watch for that curve ball and see if he stays away from it or if the Rangers can wait it out and find a way to take advantage of it.