MLB Picks: Series Coverage for Rangers vs. Red Sox

Darin Zank

Monday, April 7, 2014 3:01 PM GMT

So the Rangers and Sox get to play a rubber match Wednesday afternoon at Fenway (4 pm ET), and the MLB odds boards are listing the Red Sox as the -150 favorites.

 

9th April
Rangers vs. Red Sox Game 3

By: Ron Patrick

 

Texas got this series to even with a 10-7 victory Tuesday night, banging out 13 hits, seven for extra bases, handing a loss to a shaky Felix Doubront. The Rangers won as +115 underdogs on the betting line, and the game flew OVER its total of nine.  

So far in this series the Texas and Boston bullpens have allowed 11 runs.

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Wednesday's Line
As of early Wednesday AM most books were chalking Boston and Jake Peavy at around -150 over Texas and lefty Robbie Ross, with a total of nine. The Sox could also be gotten at upwards of +150 giving the run and a half on the run line.

[gameodds]3/261492/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

Wednesday's Pitching Match-Up
Jake Peavy will be making his second start of this season, after holding Milwaukee to two runs through six innings of a game the Sox eventually lost 6-2 last Friday.

Last year, splitting time with the White Sox and Red Sox, Peavy went 12-5 with a 4.16 ERA, walking 36 while striking out 121 in 145 innings.

This will be Peavy's first start against the Rangers since 2012. 

Robbie Ross had appeared in 123 games for Texas before making his first career ML start last Wednesday against Philly, allowing two ER and seven hits through five innings of a 4-3 Rangers victory. 

So Ross, with 132 career innings in the Bigs, owns a career 2.65 ERA. 

Ross has made five career appearances against Boston, allowing five hits and one run through 3 1/3 innings.

 

Injury Update
Texas will be without 3B Adrian Beltre Wednesday, after he left Tuesday's game with a sore thigh and was sent home.

 

Free Pick for Wednesday 
We were leaning toward taking the Rangers in this game, mainly because of the underdog price, but Beltre's absence scared us away. So instead of looking at a side for our free pick on this series finale, we'll bet the bullpens and go with the OVER 8.5 runs offered at The Greek.

 

8th April
Rangers vs. Red Sox Game 2

By: Ron Patrick

 

These two teams are now a combined 4-10 on the totals so far this season. 

The Rangers have now scored a total of 16 runs over their last six games, in part because Prince Fielder is now four-for-28 at the plate, with just one extra-base hit, for his new team. 

Texas will try to get this series to even when the teams meet for Game Two Tuesday night (6:10 pm ET).

 

Tuesday's Line
As of early Tuesday morning most books were listing Boston and Felix Doubront at around -140 over Texas and fellow lefty Martin Perez, with a total of 9.5.

The Sox can also be gotten at upwards of +150 giving the run and a half on the run line.

[gameodds]3/261338/?r-1=19-43-349/us[/gameodds]

Tuesday's Arms Battle
Doubront will be making his second start of this season, after giving up three runs in 5 1/3 innings of a 4-3 Boston victory over Baltimore last Thursday.

Last year Doubront went 11-6 with a 4.32 ERA. He gave up 161 hits in 162 innings, struck out 139 but walked 71. Doubront (by our tough standards) posted only 12 quality starts out of 27 outings last year, but the Sox, with some good run support, won 18 of those games. 

Doubront made one start last year against Texas and got bombed for six runs and 12 hits in less than four innings of a 7-0 Boston defeat in May. 

Perez will also be making his second start of the season, after allowing two runs through 5 2/3 innings of a 3-2 Rangers victory over Philadelphia last Tuesday. 

Last year Perez went 10-6 with a 3.62 ERA, giving up 129 hits in 124 innings, walking 37 while striking out 84. He went 11-for-20 on quality starts, and Texas won 12 of those games.

Perez started once against Boston last year, giving up one run through six innings of a 2-1 Texas loss in July.

 

Free Pick for Tuesday 
Texas hasn't done much with the sticks so far this season, but maybe it can break out against Doubront, who's lived dangerously the last couple of years. So we'll go with the Rangers, getting +127 at BetOnline, for our our free MLB for Tuesday.

 

7th April
Rangers vs. Red Sox Game 1

By: Ron Patrick

 

The Line
Most books we consulted Monday morning opened Boston and John Lackey at around -155 over Texans and Tanner Scheppers, with a total of nine. Many shops then bumped the Sox to -165 and even -170 in the early betting.

 Also, The Greek was chalking Boston at -180 to win this series, with the Rangers getting +160 as the underdogs.

[gameodds]3/261234/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

 The Situation
Boston is off to a 2-4 start to this season, taking two of three games in Baltimore, but getting swept three games by Milwaukee at home over the weekend.

Texas is off to a 3-3 start, taking two of three games from Philly, then dropping two of three games at Tampa over the weekend. 

The Red Sox lost lead-off hitter Jacoby Ellsbury to free agency over the off-season, and so far are having trouble replacing him at the top of the lineup. Last year Boston lead-off hitters ranked fourth in the Majors with a .348 OBP; so far this season they own an OBP of .214.

Also, Texas leads the Majors with a .388 batting average with runners in scoring position so far this season, while Boston is hitting just .136 RISP. But those are numbers we'd figure would even out a little over the course of the next week or so.


Monday's Pitching Match-Up
Lackey (10-13, 3.52 last year) will be making his second start of this season, after holding Baltimore to two runs and three hits through six innings of a 6-2 Boston victory last Wednesday.

Last year Lackey started twice against Texas, allowing four runs and 14 baserunners (hits + walks) through 11 innings; but the Sox lost both those games.

Young righty Scheppers (6-2, 1.88 last year) will be making his second career MLB start (115 relief appearances), after getting clipped for seven runs and eight hits in four innings of a 14-10 Texas loss last Monday against Philadelphia.

Scheppers made three relief appearances against Boston last year, allowing one run and one hit in 3 1/3 innings.

 

Rangers-Red Sox Recent History
Texas took the season series from Boston last year four games to two, with four of those games playing UNDER on the totals. The Sox exploded for 17 runs in one of those contests, but other than that the games trended toward low-scoring.

 
Rangers-Red Sox Injury Update
Boston has already had to make a couple of moves this season, placing OF Shane Victorino (hamstring) and 3B Will Middlebrooks (calf) on the DL. The Sox were hoping Victorino would take over for Ellsbury in the lead-off spot, but so far that hasn't worked out. 

 
Free MLB Pick for Monday
Neither team has done a whole lot offensively so far this season, but it appears Boston really misses Ellsbury. Also, while Lackey owns the edge in the pitching match-up, the price on Monday's game seems a bit steep for this spot. So in searching for value here we'll go with Texas, getting +156 at Heritage Sports, for our free MLB for Monday.