Only one other pitcher in the Majors this year has won or lost all his starts, adding up to a total of 18: the Cubs' Carlos Zambrano. Only 17 pitchers since 1980 have earned decisions in their first 18 starts. Pedro Martinez, who started the 1999 season at 15-3, is the last Red Sox pitcher before Wakefield to pull off the feat.
Wakefield will look to make it 19 with a win against an improving Royals team. Kansas City has a winning record since May 10, spanning more than two months. The Royals will call on 24-year-old right-hander Leo Nunez to make his first career start. Nunez has Major League experience in two previous years as a reliever, but not this season.
BOS: RHP Tim Wakefield (10-8, 4.47 ERA)
Only three American League teams -- the Indians, Twins and the Mariners -- have faced Wakefield as infrequently as the Royals. And yet 23 appearances later, Wakefield has still logged an impressive 130 1/3 innings against Kansas City. No AL team has had as much trouble with Wakefield's knuckler; he has a 3.66 ERA against the Royals, his best against any AL opponent.
KC: RHP Leo Nunez (2007 debut)
Nunez pitched parts of the 2005 and '06 seasons with the big club, but never made a start. He made a pair of appearances at Fenway Park on Aug. 3 and 4, 2005, but not with much success, allowing a total of five earned runs in 1 1/3 innings.
Player to watch
Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek, who returned after a one-day layoff on Monday night, hit a grand slam off Nunez in that Aug. 4, 2005, appearance.
On the Internet
Official game notes
WRKO 680, WROL (Español)
Wednesday: Red Sox (Julian Tavarez, 5-7, 5.15) vs. Royals (Odalis Perez, 4-8, 5.68), 7:05 p.m. ET
Thursday: Red Sox (Daisuke Matsuzaka, 11-6, 3.94) vs. White Sox (Javier Vazquez, 6-5, 3.77), 7:05 p.m. ET
Friday: Red Sox (Josh Beckett, 12-3, 3.35) vs. White Sox (Jose Contreras, 5-11, 5.32), 7:05 p.m. ET