This handicapper enjoyed the results of Saturday's Jays-Red Sox contest, and will shoot for more of the same when Toronto attempts to complete the sweep Sunday afternoon at Fenway.
Jays-Sox Sunday Betting Odds
In the early betting 5Dimes was offering the best lines we could find on both teams; Boston and rookie lefty Eduardo Rodriguez were chalked at -111, with Toronto and Marco Estrada getting +106. And most books were posting the total on today's game at 8.5 runs.
Toronto has taken the first two games of this series, by scores of 13-10 and 5-4. The Jays trailed Friday 8-4 into the seventh inning, then put up a nine spot to take control. Saturday Toronto led 4-0, allowed Boston to tie it, but won it on Russell Martin's homer in the 11th inning.
So the Jays have won 10 games in a row, and at 33-30 overall now sit just one game out of first place in the AL East.
The Sox, on the other hand, have lost five in a row, and at 27-36 sit in last place in the AL East, seven games off the pace.
Toronto now leads this season series five games to three, with the totals splitting 3-3-2.
Sunday's Starting Pitchers
Rodriguez (2-0, 0.44) is three-for-three on quality starts in his young ML career. Two weeks ago, in his ML debut, he held Texas scoreless on three hits through 7 2/3 innings; then he held Minnesota to one run and two hits through seven innings; and Tuesday he held Baltimore scoreless on three hits through six innings. So through the first 20 2/3 innings of his career Rodriguez has allowed just eight hits and one run, with seven walks and 21 strikeouts; Boston is 2-1 in games Rodriguez has started, with the UNDERS going 2-1.
This will be Rodriguez's first-ever start against the Blue Jays, which could give him an advantage for at least the first couple of times through the lineup.
Estrada (3-3, 3.78) is three-for-seven on quality starts this year, but all three of those have come in his last three starts. Monday he held Miami to three runs through seven innings, with zero walks and six strikeouts, and over his last three starts he's allowed eight earned runs through 20 innings. On the season Estrada has allowed fewer hits, 47, than innings pitched, 52 1/3, and his K/BB rate is pretty good, at 44/16; Toronto is 2-5 in his starts, with the OVERS going 4-3.
In his only career start against Boston, in April of last season while pitching for Milwaukee, Estrada gave up two runs – one earned – through 5 2/3 innings of a 6-2 Brewers victory. He also pitched three scoreless innings of relief against the Sox back on April 28, and got a W for his efforts.
Sunday's Batting Splits
Toronto leads the Majors this season against left-handed pitching with a gaudy .366 team OBP.
Boston ranks 10th this season against right-handed pitching with a .321 OBP.
Toronto is three games above .500 overall this season and 9-4 against left-handed starters.
Boston is 19-26 this year against RH starters.
The Sox might be a little shorthanded Sunday with both 3B Pablo Sandoval (quad) and OF Mookie Betts (back) listed as questionable.
Jays-Sox Sunday Free Picks
Rodriguez might be a hot item at the moment, but for us this game falls under the “streak” theory; Toronto has won 10 in a row, while Boston is finding ways to lose. Also, while the first two games of this series have seen a total of 32 runs scored, we're thinking that pace will be slowed today.