MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions | Angels vs Red Sox Betting Preview for Friday, April 14
Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images. Pictured: Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani.
- The Los Angeles Angels and Boston Red Sox open a four-game set at Fenway Park on Friday night.
- Our MLB expert believes there's a good chance Mike Trout, Shohei Ohtani and the Angels beat up on Red Sox starter Tanner Houck.
- Continue reading for a preview of Angels vs. Red Sox, plus a betting a pick.
Angels vs. Red Sox Odds
-118 / -104
|Red Sox Odds|
-118 / -104
The Los Angeles Angels have made the trip across the country to begin a series Friday night against the Boston Red Sox. They are also bringing some momentum along with them, as they just took two games from the Nationals and have won six of their last 10 games overall.
They’ll enter the confines of Fenway Park, where the Red Sox will be looking to right the ship. Boston enters this series after getting swept by the undefeated Tampa Bay Rays, and has also lost seven of its last 10.
Trying to put an end to their cold streak will be Tanner Houck. Houck has pitched well through his first two starts of the season, but returning to his home mound might spell trouble for the young right-hander.
Opposing him for the Angels will be Patrick Sandoval. The lethal lefty broke out in 2022 and has continued to look solid in his first few starts of 2023. However, there are some concerning signs that may lead to some regression.
So, who will take the first game of this weekend’s series? Let’s take a closer look to find out.
For all the knocks that the Angels get over not building a team around Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout, they’ve shown early on that their two stars may finally have some support in the lineup. Taylor Ward was a popular breakout pick from the fantasy community entering the season and has delivered thus far.
Ward is hitting .292 with two homers and six RBI and holds a wOBA of .390. However, he’s not alone, as rookie catcher Logan O’Hoppe made the team out of camp and is showing why. O’Hoppe has already flashed his pull-side power by hitting four homers and driving in 11 through the team’s first 12 games.
With the excellent production of Ward and O’Hoppe, the Angels now have four legitimate threats in their lineup, which gives Houck a lot to worry about and could pile on his home struggles. In his young career, Houck has faced nearly the same amount of hitters both at home and on the road, but the results have been very different.
Houck’s ERA is more than a full run higher at home, and his FIP is 4.25. The majority of those against left-handed hitters, as he’s allowed plenty of hard contact to them, and that could be disastrous against the lefties that the Angels feature.
The Red Sox have been one of the better lineups against left-handed pitching in the early going of the 2023 season. That is likely due to how they are able to configure their lineup and stack righties. We saw them do this Thursday when they faced Jeffrey Springs of the Rays.
Having the likes of Justin Turner and Enrique Hernandez gives them an immediate boost against lefties, but their lineup also featured the likes of Bobby Dalbec and Rob Refsynder. On top of their lineup configuration, they may also be the team to give the regression Sandoval’s trends have been indicating.
Sandoval enters this outing with an xERA of 5.06 and a FIP of 3.85. Although, those numbers are misleading when you analyze his pitch breakdown.
Through two starts, we have seen Sandoval alter his pitch distribution from last year. His changeup has become his primary pitch, and his slider usage has dropped four percent. Righties have hammered his changeup as it has an xBA of .349, but his fastball and slider have xBAs of .200 and .186, respectively.
If Sandoval can revert his usage and work off his slider and fastball, we should see another quality outing from him.
Angels vs. Red Sox Betting Pick
While Sandoval has all the indications of regression and a bad splits matchup, I still trust him much more than Houck. Houck’s history of issues both at home and against lefties is a more detrimental combination than the one Sandoval presents.
We should see the likes of Ohtani and Ward thrive against Houck and lead the Angels in run production. Although, we obviously can’t forget about Trout and the rising backstop in O’Hoppe.
So while the Red Sox may be tailor-made to hit Sandoval, I don’t see them being able to do enough to counteract their pitching. Back the Angels in this series opener.
Pick: Angels -122
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