MLB Picks: ALCS Game 5 Red Sox vs. Tigers

Jeff Grant

Thursday, October 17, 2013 11:43 AM GMT

The Boston Red Sox have failed to take advantage of numerous opportunities through four games of this series, but that may change against the Detroit Tigers Thursday.

Let’s take a closer look at the MLB betting odds for Game 5 of the 2013 ALCS at Comerica Park, with the first pitch scheduled for 8:07 p.m. ET on FOX.

Inconsistency at the plate

Boston has scored just 10 runs in the first four games of this best-of-seven series, with four of those coming on David Ortiz’ grand slam in Game 2, as the club looks to bounce back from a 7-3 road loss to Detroit Wednesday.

The Red Sox did collect 12 hits last night, with leadoff batter Jacoby Ellsbury leading the charge by going 4 for 5 with an RBI triple.

In a game that figures to be close throughout, Boston’s 0.74 bullpen ERA in the postseason may be the difference.

Switching things up

Detroit evened up the series at two games apiece with last night’s victory, as manager Jim Leyland switched around the lineup with great success, with veteran outfielder Torii Hunter landing in the leadoff spot for the first time since 1999.

The Tigers may elect to insert Austin Jackson back to his normal spot in the No. 1 hole, considering he reached base four times in Game 4.

MLB handicappers may elect to back the home team in the first five innings in this affair, with Detroit’s starting rotation striking out 42 batters in 27 innings of work in this series.

Lester

Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester suffered a 1-0 home loss in the opening game of this series last Saturday, as he allowed one run on six hits over 6.1 frames, while issuing a single walk and striking out four batters.

The left-hander went 8-7 with a 4.21 ERA in 20 road games during the regular season, with opposing batters hitting .263 against him.

How much is the Price on this Series?

Sanchez

Tigers starting pitcher Anibal Sanchez earned the victory in taking on Lester last time out, as he didn’t allow a hit in six scoreless innings on the mound, while issuing six walks and striking out 12 batters.

The right-hander compiled an 8-3 record and 2.70 ERA in 14 home games during the regular season, surrendering just four home runs in 93.1 combined frames.

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Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Red Sox for their MLB picks, as they’ve won 12 of Jon Lester’s last 14 starts following a team loss in their previous game.

MLB Pick: Boston Red Sox