Chicago Cubs vs. Boston Red Sox Preview, Friday 5/20, 6:10 CT: 93 Years In The Making

A view of the press box during a game between the Boston Red Sox and the Detroit Tigers at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Everyone knows it's been 93 years since the Cubs have played at Fenway Park in Boston against the Red Sox in the World Series.

But it's not the last time the Cubs have played in Boston. The Braves franchise -- which, along with the Cubs is the oldest continuous franchise in the major leagues, both dating from 1876 -- played in Boston until 1952.

So, the last time the Cubs played in Boston was September 14, 1952, a doubleheader split, both by one run, in front of what was likely a disinterested crowd of 3,482. The last Cub to bat in Boston was Frankie Baumholtz, who struck out to end the top of the ninth in a scoreless tie; the final play was a walkoff home run by future Hall of Famer Eddie Mathews off Johnny Klippstein in a 1-0 Braves win.

The game tonight will attract a lot more attention than those did and will certainly be attended by more than 10 times as many people. Incidentally, part of Braves Field still stands in Boston, part of Boston University's Nickerson Field, where B.U. played football until 1997; soccer and field hockey games are still played there and B.U.'s graduation ceremony will take place this Sunday.

Now, let's play ball. Red Sox vs. Cubs. Can't wait.

Cubs lineup:

Castro ss, Barney 2b, Baker 3b, Ramirez dh, Pena 1b, Byrd cf, Soriano lf, Johnson cf, Hill c

Red Sox lineup:

Ellsbury cf, Pedroia 2b, Gonzalez 1b, Youkilis 3b, Ortiz dh, Lowrie ss, Cameron rf, Crawford rf, Saltalamacchia c
Today's Starting Pitchers
Doug Davis
Doug Davis
Cubs
vs. Jon Lester
Jon Lester
Red Sox
0-1 W-L 5-1
1.80 ERA 3.28
6 SO 54
1 BB 28
0 HR 9
vs. Bos -- vs. Cubs

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Doug Davis 0-1 1 1 0 0 0 0 5.0 4 3 1 0 1 6 1.80 1.00


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2011 - Jon Lester 5-1 9 9 0 0 0 0 57.2 48 21 21 9 24 58 3.28 1.25

Jon Lester, obviously, has never faced the Cubs... but one Cub, he's faced a lot: Carlos Pena, who's been in the AL East for several seasons before this year. Pena has hit Lester like the proverbial drum: 10-for-34, with five home runs. That short porch at Fenway should look inviting for Pena tonight, and all weekend; he has nine career homers in Boston.

Doug Davis last faced the Red Sox in interleague play June 24, 2008 while with the Diamondbacks. He's faced a number of Boston players many times over his career -- the one who's hit him best is a former Brewer teammate, Mike Cameron: 17-for-51 (.333), six doubles, a triple, two HR.

Oh, and remember when the Cubs had a pitcher whose name was pronounced "Jon Lester"? Only it was spelled "Jon Leicester". Leicester is still around; he's pitching for Triple-A Tucson in the Padres organization. I wouldn't be surprised to see him back in the majors someday.

Today's game is on WGN, NESN, and outside the Boston and Chicago areas, on MLB Network. Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Red Sox site Over The Monster.

Today's first pitch thread will be up at 6 p.m. CDT and the overflow threads will post at 7 pm, 8 pm and 8:45 pm CDT. If you need more overflows due to extra innings or rain delays, post them in the fanshot section.

Discuss amongst yourselves.

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