The Tampa Bay Rays take on the Boston Red Sox in the second game of this series today in Boston. This will be just their second game of the season against each other after playing their first yesterday. The Red Sox won yesterday 4-0 but they did it pretty handily. The Red Sox bullpen was able to shut the Rays down. Josh Fleming was the bulk reliever yesterday and he is a lefty. He actually had a lot of success against the Red Sox, which worries me a bit. However, I think the Red Sox overall numbers against lefties should prevail over their inability to hit the lefty yesterday. The Rays bats were on fire the last three games in Toronto, but they did get the comfort of facing some of the Blue Jays worst pitchers.
The Red Sox are 19-8 in their past 27 games and that includes 8-2 at home. The Red Sox are also 8-4 at home against the Rays in their past 12 games. They were 7-4 against the Rays at home last season and they won the first game of this series. Nick Pivetta has been much better at home going 4-2 with a 2.79 ERA this season and he has thrown 10 quality starts in his last 11 starts. The Rays hitters have also yet to see him this season. Jeffrey Springs has been good this season, but he hasn’t pitched since June 24 for numerous different reasons. He was slated to maybe come in as a reliever in a game before he ended up leaving the team for a Family Medical emergency. He was also hit hard in his last two starts before his layoff. The Red Sox are ranked 7th in the league in wOBA against lefties in the past 30 days while the Rays have the 5th worst wOBA against righties in the past 30 days.
The Red Sox also have a massive bullpen advantage, something that they almost never have against the Rays. They are ranked 6th in the league in bullpen ERA in the past 30 days while the Rays are ranked 15th in the league. If we look at the entire season, the Rays have the bullpen advantage over the Red Sox, but bullpens are important to look at lately because of injuries and different roles for each pitcher. I like the Red Sox at home here.
Red Sox ML -130 vs. Rays