Clement out to ground Birds

Clement out to ground Orioles in his debut

He enters the season under the radar, the forgotten man in a rotation that includes Curt Schilling, Josh Beckett, Tim Wakefield and David Wells.

But that suits Matt Clement just fine. He just wants to pitch. The right-hander is not worried about headlines. His concern is outs.

Clement takes the ball for the Red Sox on Friday night as they open a three-game series at Camden Yards against the Orioles.

"It's always nice to get that first real start out there," said Clement. "I look forward to every start. I feel good and confident, that's better than not feeling good and not being confident."

Clement will face a Baltimore lineup that has some thump, including Miguel Tejada and Melvin Mora.

"This is a good lineup," Clement said. "This is a good test the first time out."

The Red Sox took two out of three at Texas to start the season and will try to keep that momentum going in Baltimore.

Pitching matchup
BOS: RHP Matt Clement (13-6, 4.57 ERA in 2005)
The Red Sox hope Clement can get off to the same type of start as he did a year ago, when he won 10 of his first 12 decisions to make the All-Star team. Clement has pitched well against the Orioles in his career, going 4-0 with a 3.00 ERA in seven starts.

BAL: RHP Daniel Cabrera (10-13, 4.52 ERA in 2005)
Cabrera has been erratic all spring, showing dominant form in some innings and struggling to retire anyone in others. The Orioles are expecting Cabrera to step forward and harness his stuff this season, and new pitching coach Leo Mazzone will have a huge hand in that effort. Cabrera has never had a 2:1 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He is 1-3 with a 6.96 ERA -- with 17 walks and 23 strikeouts in 22 innings -- in five career starts against the Red Sox.

Player to watch
Star slugger Manny Ramirez was surprisingly quiet in Texas, producing just one hit in 10 at-bats. In other words, expect Ramirez to erupt this weekend.

On the Internet
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television

On radio
• WEEI 850 AM, WROL 950 AM (Español)

Up next
• Saturday: Red Sox (Curt Schilling, 1-0, 2.57 ERA) at Orioles (Bruce Chen, 13-10, 3.83 in 2005), 4:35 p.m. ET
• Sunday: Red Sox (Tim Wakefield, 0-1, 17.18 ERA) at Orioles (Rodrigo Lopez, 1-0, 6.43 ERA), 1:35 p.m. ET
• Monday: Off-day

Ian Browne is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.