The Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays are currently a ways out of first place in the American League East with the New York Yankees 13.5 games clear of everyone in the division, but with both teams within a game of each other in the Wild Card chase, Monday’s series opener in Boston is crucial for both teams.
Tampa Bay Rays vs Boston Red Sox (-135, 10.5)
The Red Sox will look to Austin Davis, who threw two scoreless innings in his lone start of the season and overall has a 2.45 ERA while being used mostly out of the bullpen. He figures to be an opener for a bullpen that ranks 15th in the league in bullpen ERA.
The wholesale approach will also be the way the Rays approach Monday with Jalen Beeks serving as an opener. Beeks has made four starts and 20 overall appearances this season, going 2 1⁄3 innings or less in every appearance this season.
The Rays’ bullpen is eighth in the league in bullpen ERA at 3.38 with most of the players among the regular bullpen rotation being capable of throwing multiple innings.
The Rays entered the week averaging 4.1 runs per game, which is 23rd in the league, and both teams are in the bottom half of the league in home runs per game with just under one per contest.
The Red Sox have allowed four runs or fewer in 12 of the team’s last 15 games and Monday sets up for a light-hitting affair with the holiday fireworks coming after the game.
The Play: Rays vs Red Sox Under 10.5
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