Red Sox vs Astros MLB Odds, Pick, Prediction | Case to Bet the Over

Red Sox vs Astros MLB Odds, Pick, Prediction | Case to Bet the Over article feature image

Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images. Pictured: Triston Casas.

Red Sox vs. Astros Odds

Monday, Aug 21
8:10 p.m. ET
Red Sox Odds
+102o / -121u
Astros Odds
+102o / -121u
Odds via BetRivers. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Red Sox and Astros each had designs on winning their respective divisions at one point in the season, but both teams now find themselves locked in a heated race for the Wild Card in the American League.

Can Houston gain some separation from Boston, who sits just 3.5 games behind them, or will Cristian Javier struggle yet again on Monday night?

Let's break down Red Sox vs. Astros odds and and make a betting pick.

Check out our MLB Betting Hub for more previews from today's slate.

Boston Red Sox

It's been quite the adventure for the Boston Red Sox since the All-Star break. Boston has found a way to go 18-15, sandwiching some great play around a brutal stretch which saw it drop seven of eight and even lost Justin Turner for a little while.

The Sox rank 14th in wRC+ since the break with a respectable 22% strikeout rate and .192 Isolated Power, but their walk rate has lagged a bit at 7%. Still, by hitting .257 with those power numbers, this team has been one which no pitcher wants to face.

Regression has started to hit James Paxton after a decent start to the season, and it's never been more evident than it has been this month. While his results have been more or less fine in August, Paxton's .258 xBA represents his worst month of the year, and his strikeout rate is down for a third straight month all the way at 18.3%.

The lefty has done a decent enough job at limiting walks, but he's still not striking out enough batters and the alarming number of hits he's allowed in August hasn't seemed like a fluke at all.

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Houston Astros

Now, it's time once again to talk about Cristian Javier. Does anyone know what's wrong with this guy?

The Astros certainly don't. General manager Dana Brown and skipper Dusty Baker have both chalked up the right-hander's struggles to "fatigue," which seems as good of an excuse as any, but what we've seen this season has been downright troubling.

While many will try to convince you that the issue with Javier is as simple as a drop in velocity and Stuff+, that couldn't be further from the truth. Javier's swing-and-miss and strikeout numbers began to crater after his start on June 3, and while they've recovered in a big way they haven't directly correlated with success yet.

In fact, you can make a case that Javier's looked worse than ever over the last two months with a 6.86 ERA in July and a 5.65 ERA thus far in August.

Javier's four-seam fastball velocity has been clocked at 93.6 mph on average, which is its highest of any month this season and quite close to its 2022 levels. Still, Javier's still not generating swings and misses like he needs to, and even when he was for a few starts last month he's yet to put it together on a consistent basis.

There's a little hope here, but we need to see more.

We don't really need to see any more from this Astros offense, though. They rank fourth in wRC+ over the last two weeks as they continue to tear the cover off the ball and post elite strikeout and walk numbers whilst hitting .264.

Red Sox vs. Astros

Betting Pick & Prediction

While Javier might be on his way to correcting his swing-and-miss issues, this matchup with the Red Sox isn't a very good one for him. Boston is 20th in swinging strike rate over the second half of the season and 16th in strikeout rate, making this an uphill battle for the young righty.

Without a good number of strikeouts, this start could turn sour for Javier.

On the other hand, Paxton hasn't really impressed me much of late despite some decent results, and I think with the way he's trending he's going to struggle here with Houston.

We should also note here that while the graying lefty has posted a 3.31 ERA in August, he's allowed five home runs in three starts which should work in chorus with his high expected batting average to create some serious issues.

I love the situation both offenses are in and will take this over all the way to 10 runs.

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