Red Sox vs Padres Prediction | Friday MLB Odds, Pick
Nick Grace/Getty Images. Pictured: Justin Turner.
- The slumping San Diego Padres host the Boston Red Sox at Petco Park on Friday night.
- It’s a battle of southpaws on the mound, with James Paxton starting for the Sox and Blake Snell for the Padres.
- Kenny Ducey breaks down this tricky Red Sox vs. Padres series opener, and provides a betting prediction.
Red Sox vs. Padres Odds
|Red Sox Odds|
-122 / +100
-122 / +100
A pitching matchup that would have really excited baseball fans five years ago will take place on Friday night when James Paxton heads to the bump to take on Blake Snell and the Padres.
With both left-handers going through their fair share of ups and downs since their breakout seasons, what can we expect out of them in San Diego?
Let’s break it all down in my Red Sox vs. Padres preview, which includes a betting pick on the moneyline.
This Red Sox season continues to be an absolute rollercoaster. After a huge winning streak which preceded a stretch of six losses in seven games, Boston has now won two in a row quite convincingly and looks poised to build a winning streak. Sure, it was the Seattle Mariners, but after a gutting 10-1 loss in the opening game of the series, the Red Sox hung 21 runs on Seattle in two games, allowing just seven.
All in all, things have been quite stable offensively for the Red Sox, who own a 101 wRC+ over the last two weeks with very average strikeout and walk numbers. Masataka Yoshida has cooled considerably, hitting .250 in the last 14 days, but the likes of Jarren Duran, Triston Casas and Alex Verdugo have done more than enough to pick him and some other slumping Sox up.
Unfortunately, Verdugo picked up a groin injury on Wednesday and is still day-to-day, so you may want to keep tabs on his status before betting this one.
On the bump, we’ll see Paxton for just the second time all year and the third time since the 2020 season. He’s battled injuries throughout his career, so it’s nothing new to see him missing large chunks of time, but the last time he pitched more than five games in a season he had a 3.82 ERA for the Yankees in 2019.
He struck out nine Cardinals across five innings of two-run ball in his Red Sox debut, which was quite noteworthy, and we’ll just have to wait and see if he continues that strikeout prowess against some stronger offenses.
What’s left to say at this point about the San Diego Padres? A team which relied heavily on four bats and which entered the season with major concerns in the starting rotation and bullpen has predictably struggled.
Prior to the return of Fernando Tatis Jr., it was Xander Bogaerts and Manny Machado doing the heavy lifting while Juan Soto struggled with his approach at the plate. Now Tatis is back and Soto has figured it out with a 170 wRC+ in the last two weeks, but Bogaerts has fallen off his torrid pace and Machado is injured.
This is the danger of having few other guys to carry your offense, and it’s what happens when you trust a guy like Snell to continue walking a tightrope. Snell’s poor 10.6% career walk rate along with some troubling quality-of-contact numbers have caused him to really struggle at times when he hasn’t been able to generate strikeouts at a high clip. This season, he’s all the way down to 23.5% in that department, which would represent his lowest mark since 2017.
Still, even if he’s able to strike more guys out, his walk rate of 13.7% is a career worst and his other numbers, like a 10.4% barrel rate and .466 xSLG, are simply horrid.
It’s not surprising to see the Padres have now lost nine of their last 11 games, and I’m struggling to say many good things about them. One positive is that the bullpen got a much-needed day off on Thursday after working hard on Tuesday and Wednesday, and Soto has figured out how to hit.
Red Sox vs. Padres Betting Pick
There’s really nothing for us to go off of when it comes to assessing Paxton, which makes this a very scary game to bet. He could implode, even against a slumping offense, just as easily blow us away with a 10-strikeout performance.
San Diego actually ranks 13th in wRC+ to lefties, and Boston 10th, so I could certainly see both teams having success here. With that said, I think in a matchup which seems to be a pick ’em there’s value in taking the underdog. Boston is 9-9 on the road and San Diego is 11-13 at home, so I’m not sure there’s really much of an edge here for the Padres, especially with Snell on the mound and Machado out of the lineup.
Pick: Red Sox Moneyline (+134)
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