The Red Sox were the reason Jeff Weaver experienced such a rough start to the season. He would love to exact a little revenge on Monday.

In his first start of the season, Boston jumped all over Weaver, who allowed seven runs on seven hits in only two innings, giving him a 31.50 ERA and sending him into a six-game tailspin that seemed nearly impossible to pull out of.

Two months later, Weaver appears to have found his groove, and is coming off his best start of the season, a four-hit complete-game shutout against the Pirates, offering hope to a rotation that desperately needed him to come through.

Since coming off the disabled list, Weaver is 1-0 with a 1.89 ERA. It may be a little early to say he's back, but that's what the Mariners hope for.

"The last few starts have built some confidence, and I'm feeling good physically and mechanically," Weaver said. "[Boston] is a tough team, offensively, and I'm going to have to make some quality pitches, and that's what I plan on doing."

Weaver has a 3-5 career record against the Red Sox, but would love to get back at the team that created such havoc against him so early this season.

"Obviously, I didn't have the best stuff when I was facing them, so I feel that I'm definitely going to have a better chance when I go out there," he said. "I've seen those guys in the past, so I have a pretty good idea of how I want to approach them, and it's just a matter of going up there executing."

That will be no easy task, considering the American League East-leading Red Sox have one of the most powerful lineups in all of baseball.

David Ortiz, Kevin Youkilis, Manny Ramirez, Dustin Pedroia and Mike Lowell all average above or near .300, and have combined for nearly 200 RBIs throughout the first half of this season.

Boston's pitching staff is hardly a weak link, starting with right-hander Julian Tavarez, who the Mariners face Monday. Tavarez has had little trouble with Seattle's lineup, with the exception of designated hitter Jose Vidro, who is a career .389 hitter against him.

The series pins two of the game's brightest foreign stars against each other, both Japanese, as rookie sensation Daisuke Matsuzaka will face off against Mariners All-Star Ichiro Suzuki in Wednesday's finale.

The series will be Weaver's first big test in a while, as his last two starts have come against the struggling Pirates and Cubs. Rest assured though, he's ready.

"My stuff was a lot sharper, it had a lot of late movement, and I was mechanically sound," Weaver said. "I really feel very consistent with my mechanics, my arm spots, and all the things you need to go out there and compete, and I'm feeling good right now."

Pitching matchup
SEA: RHP Jeff Weaver (1-6, 8.56 ERA)
Weaver appears to be back on track after losing his first six starts of the season, but Boston will be a big test for the 30-year-old. He has allowed at least six runs in five of his last nine starts, but only four earned runs in his previous three games, posting a 1.89 ERA over that span.

BOS: RHP Julian Tavarez (5-4, 4.50 ERA)
Tavarez has been on fire lately, winning his last two starts. In fact, he hasn't recorded a loss since the Red Sox fell, 6-3, against Baltimore on May 11. Since then, Tavarez is 4-0 in seven starts, a span that's seen Boston go 6-1.

Player to watch
Jose Vidro is the only Mariner who averages above .300 against Tavarez, having recorded seven hits in 18 previous at bats, including one home run and one RBI.

Tickets
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On the Internet
 MLB.TV
 Gameday Audio
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•  Official game notes

On television
• FSN HD

On radio
• KOMO, KDOW 1680 (Español)

Up next
• Tuesday: Mariners (Felix Hernandez, 4-4, 4.00) vs. Red Sox (TBA), 7:05 p.m. PT
• Wednesday: Mariners (Ryan Feierabend, 1-2, 8.20) vs. Red Sox (Daisuke Matsuzaka, 9-5, 4.01), 1:35 p.m. PT
• Thursday: Off-day