MLB Picks: Red Sox & Indians to go 'Over'

Jeff Grant

Thursday, April 18, 2013 1:34 PM GMT

Thursday, Apr. 18, 2013 1:34 PM GMT

The Boston Red Sox have won five games in a row, as they prepare to close out a three-game series against the Cleveland Indians Thursday night. Find out why we have decided to look at the total with our MLB picks.


Let’s take a closer look at the MLB odds for this American League matchup at Progressive Field, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m. ET.

Red (Sox) hot

Boston has won five games in a row, outscoring foes by a 23-8 margin, which includes a 6-3 victory over Cleveland as +124 road underdogs.  The Red Sox are now aiming for their first six-game winning streak since April 23-28 of last season.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the Red Sox are 47-32 against American League Central opponents, with the OVER going 40-35-4 in that situation.

Knocked out early

Cleveland surrendered three runs in the first inning and was never able to recover Wednesday, as the club will now focus on trying to end a three-game losing streak, while the OVER is 2-1 in that span.

It’s still important to point out that the Indians are 34-25 in April the last two-plus seasons, with no edge in terms of the betting total (29-29-1 Over/Under).

Lester 

Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester (2-0, 1.42 ERA) has led the club to a victory in all three of his starts this season, including a no-decision effort in a 2-1 home win over the Tampa Bay Rays last Saturday, as he allowed one run and five hits over seven frames.

The left-hander is 5-1 with a 3.34 ERA in 11 career starts against the Indians, including a perfect 3-0 mark and 3.92 ERA in seven outings at Progressive Field.

MLB handicappers will find that Boston has won five of Lester’s last six starts as a road favorite of -110 to -150, while the UNDER is 9-2-1 in his last 12 outings overall.

McAllister

Indians starting pitcher Zach McAllister (1-1, 2.19 ERA) is coming off a 9-4 home victory over the Chicago White Sox last time out, as he allowed three runs (one earned) and five hits over 6.1 innings, while issuing not a single walk and striking out six.  

The right-hander is 5-6 with a 4.95 ERA over 17 career appearances at this ballpark, as he’s dropped five of his last eight decisions in that situation. 

In two lifetime starts versus the Red Sox, McCallister has produced a 1-1 record and 3.60 ERA, allowing just 11 hits and not issuing a free pass in 15 combined frames.

[gameodds]3/225126/43/us[/gameodds]

Prediction 

I’m going to recommend that readers play the total as one of their MLB picks Thursday night, as Cleveland is expecting 15-20 mph winds out of the south throughout the game (out to center), which could lead to some home runs. 

Indians manager Terry Francona is also very familiar with Lester due to his previous time in Beantown, which should provide his hitters a solid scouting report. 

MLB Pick:  Over 7.5 at 5Dimes

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