Red Sox vs. Rays Odds, Pick & Preview: McClanahan Could Quiet Boston’s Bats (April 24)
Mike Carlson/Getty Images. Pictured: Shane McClanahan
- After a thrilling finish Saturday, the Red Sox and Rays will finish their series on Sunday afternoon.
- Shane McClanahan takes the ball for Tampa and matches up well against Boston.
- Nick Martin gives his bet and prediction below.
Red Sox vs. Rays Odds
|Red Sox Odds||+135|
|Time||1:10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.|
After a wild comeback in the bottom of the 10th inning on Saturday, the Rays will send ace Shane McClanahan to the mound in the rubber match of this three-game set with the Red Sox.
Boston will start 42-year-old Rich Hill, who will look to claim his first victory of the season.
Can the Red Sox find some run support off of McClanahan?
Boston Red Sox: Can Hill Bounce Back?
Hill showed some true professionalism last time out, pitching just after his father’s passing in a massive Patriots’ Day game against the Twins. The results were tough, but I think not putting a lot of weight on that game is pretty reasonable.
However, Hill could be in a tough spot to bounce-back on Sunday as the Rays should likely match up very well against his stuff. Additionally, Hill has been trending toward more mediocre results for several seasons.
Hill pitched to an xERA of 4.45 last season and has offered similar results this season, holding an expected mark of 4.30. His fastball velocity is far below average and he will always be working to pitch around that concern.
So a matchup against an extremely detailed Rays team, who know him well, and hit curveballs + lefties very effectively last season should be tough.
Tampa hit to a 110 wRC++ rating vs Lefties last season with a .319 wOBA. This season they have crushed lefties, with a 135 wRC+ and a .341 wOBA.
The Rays have crushed curveballs as well, which Hill throws 44% of the time. Tampa have a fourth best wCB run value of 3.4.
Boston has struggled to start the season against left-handed pitching, with a 94 wRC+ and a .300 wOBA. The Red Sox have fared reasonably well with regards to BABIP as well, sitting with a 12th highest mark of .287.
Tampa Bay Rays: McClanahan Impressing Early
McClanahan will get the ball for Tampa and although it’s still early in his career, he’s starting to look like someone who could develop into one of the best pitchers in the league. The lefty is looking like another shrewd draft pick from the Rays’ front office.
The 24-year-old has started off his season very effectively with a 2.40 xERA. He has thrown to a fantastic 5.24 QOPA in his first two games this season and that high quality stuff shows why he’s posted an excellent 40.7 strikeout rate so far.
Red Sox-Rays Pick
Tampa should have a considerable pitching edge in the first five innings as they hand the ball to a guy who could end up in the Cy Young mix.
The Rays will face a pitcher who I believe will post less than dominant results this season. Tampa hit the breaking ball well last season and matches up well against lefties, which isn’t a good sign for Hill and the Red Sox.
This is not a call I’m happy to make as Hill has recently gone through a tough situation with his father’s passing. As a fan, to see him bounce back would be really exciting, but even a pretty good outing could likely be met with little run support against McClanahan.
I see value backing Tampa -0.5 in the first five innings at -115 and would play that down to -125.
Pick: Tampa Bay Rays First 5 Innings -0.5 -115 (Play to -125)
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