The Boston Red Sox are in the rare circumstance of having a winning record, but still being in last place in their division with the level of play from the whole American League East this season and will to pick up a win on Saturday on the road against the San Diego Padres to keep pace.
Boston Red Sox vs. San Diego Padres (-130, 7.5)
The 2023 season has been a struggle for Red Sox starter Chris Sale, posting a 5.40 ERA with three runs or more allowed in five of his eight starts this season with his advanced numbers showing his pitched better than the raw ERA indicates.
Sale has a 3.78 FIP with 11.2 strikeouts and 2.5 walks per nine innings, but is also facing a Padres lineup that has been a bit unlucky this season as well.
The Padres entered the series last among the 30 MLB teams in batting average at .226 and hitting .196 with runners in scoring position, putting them on-pace to be the first team in MLB history to hit under .200 with runners in scoring position since the stat has been kept.
The offense will need to kick it into gear if they want to pick up a win on Saturday with how starting pitcher Joe Musgrove has pitched this season.
Overall this season, Musgrove has allowed at least three runs in three of his four starts with a 6.63 ERA and five home runs allowed in 19 innings this season.
While Musgrove’s numbers suffer from the start he had to make at the end of April in Mexico City, even with that start excluded his ERA is still 4.02 with 9.8 hits per nine innings allowed.
Hurting the cause of Musgrove further is having to face a Red Sox lineup that entered the series third in the league in runs per game with more 5.6 runs per game and their .272 batting average second in the league.
Entering the series, the over has hit in 69.1% of Red Sox games with a record of 29-13-1 and with a pair of starters that are far removed from their former All-Star form, Saturday sets up for a slugfest.
The Play: Red Sox vs. Padres Over 7.5