START: Dodgers fans covet Soto, Red Sox fall apart

A preview of what’s happening around the majors on Monday:

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DODGE THE QUESTION?

Washington star Juan Soto is sure to be asked about his near future during a three-game series at Dodger Stadium. As the August 2 trade deadline approached, there was growing speculation that Soto could be on the move.

Soto was serenaded with chants of “Future Dodger!” during the All-Star Game last week at Dodger Stadium. The Nationals have the worst record in the majors and Los Angeles has the best in the NL.

Tony Gonsolin (11-0, 2.02 ERA) is coming back from his All-Star Game loss to start in Los Angeles. The Dodgers won a season-high eight in a row overall and 11 in a row at home, including a four-game sweep against the Giants over the weekend.

SOX RED SOX

Xander Bogaerts and the ailing Red Sox have lost five straight as they begin a four-game series against Cleveland at Fenway Park.

Boston made three errors and a string of other blunders in an 8-4 loss Sunday as the Blue Jays completed a three-game sweep that included a 28-5 record.

“The brand of baseball we play is awful,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said.

“We don’t catch the ball. We don’t put good sticks, we don’t launch strikes. It’s bad. It’s really bad right now,” he said. “But we are talented. And we can turn around quickly, and it starts tomorrow.

The Red Sox are just half a game from last place in the AL East. They lost nine of 10 and 13 of 16.

Right-hander Zach Plesac (2-7, 4.02 ERA) starts Game 1 for the Guardians. Right-hander Nick Pivetta (8-7, 4.50) pitches for Boston.

PROFITABLE

Brewers left-hander Aaron Ashby is making his first start since signing a five-year, $20.5 million contract.

Ashby (2-7, 4.57 ERA) faces Colorado’s Kyle Freeland (4-7, 4.96) in the conclusion of a four-game series in Milwaukee.

Ashby, 24, made his big league debut in June 2021, and he went 3-2 with a 4.55 ERA in four starts and nine relief appearances. He is the nephew of Andy Ashby, who pitched for five major league teams from 1991 to 2004.

FAMILIAR ENEMY

Astros right-hander Jake Odorizzi pitches Game 1 against Oakland at the Coliseum — it will be his third straight start against the Athletics.

Odorizzi (4-2, 3.56 ERA) picked up the win on July 10 at Oakland with seven shutout innings. He had a no-decision against the A’s in Houston on July 17, allowing three runs in 5 1/3 innings.

The AL West-leading Astros have won five straight since the All-Star break. They swept a home double against the Yankees, who have the best record in the majors, then won three in a row in Seattle – the Mariners had a 14-game winning streak before that.

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