The Sunday afternoon matchup between the Indians and Red Sox marks the last time the two clubs are scheduled to meet each other during the 2013 regular season.
After sweeping a three-game series in Cleveland last month, the Sox have won two of the first three contests of this weekend's four-game set at Fenway. In Sunday's finale, lefty Felix Doubront will throw for the home team opposite Indians right-hander Corey Kluber.
In his past two outings, Doubront lasted a combined 11 innings and compiled a 3.27 ERA. He also notched 10 strikeouts while walking eight. His fastball, which has typically stayed around 90 mph this season, reached 93 mph in his last start, as it had done often in 2012.
"It was consistent with his last outing down in Tampa and I think he's on to something with the adjustments he's made," Boston manager John Farrell said after Doubront's last appearance. "I thought today was another positive step for him here tonight."
In eight games this season (seven starts), Doubront is 3-2 with a 5.61 ERA.
"I'm feeling my breaking ball, feeling my fastball, everything went really well," Doubront said. "Step by step, I think I threw the ball well.
"I think everything is going in the right direction right now, just looking forward to my next outing."
That comes against Kluber and the Indians. The Tribe righty has had his difficulties in May, going 1-3 with a 6.75 ERA in four outings this month. Against Detroit on Tuesday, Kluber gave up three runs and eight hits -- including a costly two-run homer to Miguel Cabrera -- over 6 1/3 innings.
"I thought Corey was extremely aggressive and crisp," Indians manager Terry Francona said after Kluber's last start. "He's learning quickly. I think he's confident. He came out of the chutes tonight throwing pretty good, but he made a couple mistakes to the wrong guy."
On the season, Kluber is 3-3 with a 5.19 ERA.
Indians: Lower velocity has Pestano reeling
Setup man Vinnie Pestano has struggled in two of the four outings he's had since returning from the disabled list (right elbow tendinitis) on May 17. The righty gave up a game-tying homer in the eighth inning of a game against Seattle on Monday, and on Saturday was tagged for four runs (including the tying and go-ahead scores) in the Tribe's 7-4 defeat.
Before Saturday's outing, Pestano had never given up four hits or four runs in a single appearances. He also had never given up three doubles in one outing. Part of the problem was Pestano's decreased velocity, which he attributed to being on the DL and not throwing regularly.
"I'm still trying to figure it out," Pestano said. "I'm throwing 87-mph fastballs right now. That's something we've got to address."
Pestano has blown saves in two of his past three outings. He's 1-1 with a career-high 5.25 ERA.
Red Sox: Pedroia playing and raking every day
Dustin Pedroia drove in the go-ahead run in Saturday's 7-4 win for the Red Sox. He went 2-for-4 with two doubles, an RBI, a walk and a run scored. The effort lifted his season average to .337.
Pedroia has played in all 50 of Boston's games this season and managed to reach base in all but five of them. Farrell acknowledged that the second baseman might get a day off sometime soon, but he wouldn't be surprised if that day never came, either.
"I'll probably look [for a day off for him] and he'll probably continue to be in the lineup," Farrell said. "As we know, he's not a guy that's looking to come out of the lineup. Whether it's 162, there may be a time along the way where we give him a break, but right now he's still going strong."
• Through the first six games of the season series, the Red Sox have outscored Cleveland, 37-25.
Mark Emery is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.