MLB Picks: Tigers vs. Red Sox Series Coverage

Darin Zank

Friday, May 16, 2014 12:06 PM GMT

Friday, May. 16, 2014 12:06 PM GMT

Detroit is within a victory of sweeping this series, after winning Saturday 6-1. So who do we go with for our free pick on Sunday's series finale (8 pm ET, ESPN); the best team in baseball so far this season, or the defending World Series champs? Or do we take a shot at the total?

 

18th May
Tigers vs. Red Sox Game 3

By: Ron Patrick

 

Sunday's Betting Line
As of early Sunday AM most shops were listing Boston and Jake Peavy at around -115 over Detroit and Anibal Sanchez, with a total of 8.5.

[gameodds]3/264263/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

Sunday's Starters
Peavy (1-1, 3.94) is five-for-eight on quality starts this year, but is coming off his worst outing of the season, in which he got knocked around for six runs in less than five innings by Minnesota. Before that, Peavy had allowed six runs over his previous three starts, covering 19 1/3 innings. 

So far this season Peavy has allowed 43 hits in 48 innings, but also eight home runs and 27 walks. Boston is 4-4 in Peavy's starts, with the totals leaning toward the UNDERS by a 5-2 margin.

Peavy started twice last year against the Tigers, once with the White Sox, and once in that ALCS for Boston, giving up 11 runs in 10 innings. His teams split those two games, and both played OVER the totals.

Sanchez (0-2, 3.13) is expected to come off the DL (blister) to make his first start Sunday since April 26. He's 0-for-five on quality starts this season, mainly because he's pitched six full innings just once.

On the season Sanchez has allowed 15 hits in 23 innings, walked 11 and struck out 24. Detroit is 2-3 in Sanchez' starts, with the totals splitting 2-2.

Sanchez started twice against Boston last October in that ALCS, holding the Sox to three ER and nine hits in 12 innings, walking six but striking out 17. The Tigers split those two games.

Check out live MLB World Series Betting Lines

Betting Trends Update
Detroit has won 10 road games in a row. 

The Tigers have also won five games in a row overall, allowing a total of eight runs.

Boston has lost three games in a row, scoring a total of four runs.


Free Pick for Sunday
The first two games of this series have played UNDER on the totals, but we get the feeling that will change Sunday night. So we'll go with the OVER 8.5 runs (-112) offered at Pinnacle for our free pick on Sunday's game.

 

17th May
Tigers vs. Red Sox Game 2

By: Ron Patrick

 

Saturday's Line
Early on most shops were listing Boston and John Lackey at around -120 over Detroit and Rick Porcello, with a total of 8.5 runs. But many shops then bumped the Sox to around -130.

[gameodds]3/264201/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

Saturday's Starters
Lackey (5-2, 3.57) is six-for-eight on quality starts this season, and four for his last four. Most recently he held Texas to two runs through seven innings, and over his last four starts he's allowed seven runs in 29 innings. 

So far this season Lackey has allowed 53 hits in 53 innings, walked 11 and struck out 52. Boston is 5-3 in Lackey's starts, with the totals skewing toward the UNDERS by a 5-3 split.

Including that playoff series of last October Lackey started three times against Detroit last year, giving up five runs and 18 hits in 21 innings; thanks to some poor run support the Sox only won one of those games, and all three contests played UNDER on the totals.

Porcello (6-1, 3.22) is five-for-seven on quality starts, and three for his last three. Last time out he held Baltimore to one run through six innings, and over his last three outings he's limited foes to five runs through 19 2/3 innings.

On the season Porcello has allowed 40 hits in 44 2/3 innings, while compiling a 29/6 K/BB ratio. Detroit is 6-1 in Porcello's starts, with the totals leaning toward the UNDERS 4-3.

Porcello started once against the Red Sox last year, and got knocked around for eight ER in five innings of a 20-4 Tigers loss.

Saturday's Free Pick

The pitching match-up is about even, but Lackey was tough in three starts against Detroit last year, while Porcello got rocked in his one start against Boston. So we'll go with the Red Sox, at the -125 offered at BetOnline, for our free pick on Saturday's game.

 

16th May
Tigers vs. Red Sox Game 1

By: Ron Patrick

 

The Betting Lines
As of Friday morning most shops were listing Boston and Jon Lester at around -110 over Detroit and Max Scherzer, with a total of eight runs. Also, The Greek was chalking the Sox at -125 to win this series, with the Tigers getting +105.
 

Series Set-Up
Boston just dropped two of three games in Minnesota, losing 4-3 in 10 innings Thursday, to complete a 3-3 road trip. At 20-20 the Red Sox are tied for third place in a tight AL East, a game and a half back of the first-place Orioles.

Detroit, meanwhile, just swept three games in Baltimore, winning Wednesday 7-5. At 24-12 the Tigers lead the AL Central by six games over second-place Kansas City.

This is the first meeting this season between these two teams. Last year Detroit took the season series from Boston four games to three, before the Sox beat the Tigers four games to two in the ALCS.
 

Friday's Pitching Match-Up
Lester (4-4, 2.75), by our strict standards, is six-for-eight on quality starts this season. Most recently he gave up three runs in seven innings against Texas, and just before that he threw eight scoreless innings against Oakland, allowing just one hit, while striking out 15.

For the season Lester has allowed 47 hits in 55 2/3 innings, walked 13 and whiffed 66. Boston is 4-4 in Lester's starts, with the totals leaning toward the 'unders' by a 6-2 margin.

Scherzer (5-1, 2.04) is also six-for-eight on quality starts this season. Last time out, he gave up three runs in six innings against Minnesota, and over his last five starts he's allowed just six ER in 33 innings.Including that playoff series Lester started four times against the Tigers last year, giving up nine ER and 30 hits in 24 1/3 innings. The Sox won three of those four games.

On the season the defending AL Cy Young Award winner has allowed just 38 hits in 53 innings, walked 16 and struck out 66. Detroit is 6-2 in Scherzer's starts, with the totals leaning toward the 'unders' 6-2.

Including the playoffs, Scherzer started four times against the Red Sox last year, permitting eight ER and 17 hits in 27 1/3 innings; but thanks to their bullpen, the Tigers only won one of those games.

Speaking of bullpens, Boston relievers rank eighth in the Majors with a 3.18 ERA, and are 11-for-14 on save conversions, while the Detroit pen ranks 24th with a 4.50 ERA, but is 12-for-16 on save chances.
 

With the Sticks
Detroit ranks fifth in scoring at 4.9 runs per game, sixth in team OBP at .329 and, somewhat surprisingly, second in stolen bases with 35.

Boston ranks tenth in scoring at 4.3 RPG and fourth in OBP at .336. The Sox have also scored at least five runs in four of their last five games.
 

Tigers-Sox Betting Trends
Detroit has won eight games in a row on the road.

The Tigers have played six 'unders' in their last eight games.

Boston has leaned toward the 'unders' this season by a 23-15 margin, and games played at Fenway Park have tilted toward the 'unders' by a 12-9 margin.
 


Tigers-Sox Injury Update
Boston OF Shane Victorino missed Thursday's game with a sore knee, and his status for this series is uncertain.

 Free MLB Pick for Friday
This should be a dandy, with two very good starting pitchers facing off. Many factors we use to handicap baseball games balance out on this one, but the Sox have the better bullpen. And that might come in handy if this game is tight late. So, we'll go with Boston, at the -102 offered at Pinnacle, for our free MLB pick for Friday.  

[gameodds]3/264117/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

comment here