Mets vs Red Sox Prediction Today | MLB Odds, Expert Picks for Friday, July 21
Pictured: Francisco Alvarez. (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)
Mets vs. Red Sox Odds
The New York Mets and Boston Red Sox kick off a three-game set on Friday night at Fenway Park.
Kodai Senga is set to face Kutter Crawford and although both teams are on the outside looking in when it comes to the postseason, the trade deadline is approaching fast and this series could play a role in which direction these teams decide to move.
While both offenses are about the same, there's reason to believe that one pitcher has a somewhat serious edge over the other, so let's lay out the case for Senga and the Mets.
Senga has flown under the radar in New York as Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander get the bulk of the attention. Senga struggled a bit to start the season, but has (again: quietly) turned the corner and looks like the best pitcher in the Mets rotation.
His full season stats are impressive — a 3.20 ERA with a 3.70 xERA, a 3.87 FIP and a 3.70 xFIP. However, the production gets better if we narrow the scope. In his past 10 starts, Senga has a 2.61 ERA and a 3.19 FIP. In his past four starts, those marks drop to 2.22 and 2.72. And if we want to really ride the recency bandwagon, his two most recent starts are the best of his MLB career as he went eight innings and allowed just one run on four hits while striking out 12 against Arizona, then held the Dodgers to just one run on four hits with nine strikeouts over six innings.
The Mets lineup, despite objections from the fanbase, has actually been solid against right-handed pitching and boasts a wRC+ of 105 that ranks 10th in baseball and two slots above the Red Sox.
The Mets also gets the added bonus of facing a pitcher whose numbers aren't as strong as they look.
Kutter Crawford possesses a respectable 3.74 ERA (3.57 xERA, 4.08 FIP, 4.14 xFIP), but is also accounting for his time as a reliever. Of his 18 appearances this season, 10 have come as a starter (45.2 IP) and eight have come as a reliever (21.2 IP).
In his 45 2/3 innings as a starter, Crawford has a 4.73 ERA and has allowed a .783 OPS. Compare that to his 1.66 ERA and .471 OPS allowed as a reliever and it becomes clear Crawford's numbers aren't as shiny as they appear.
It's also worth noting the weather is going to be favorable for balls in play. Senga has an elite strikeout rate (11.48 K/9), while Crawford has a far more pedestrian mark (8.96 K/9).
Mets vs. Red Sox Betting Pick
The Mets bullpen has struggled this season, so I'm going to target the first five innings.
However, I really like this matchup, so I'm going do a bit of an alt escalator and bet the Mets on the first five innings moneyline (-102), as well as each alt spread FanDuel offers (-1.5 at +210; -2.5 at +350; -3.5 at +550).
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