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The Rays Are Favored to Complete Their Sweep of Boston

Austin Meadows's Rays are favored in the Boston vs Tampa Bay odds for Aug. 1.

The Tampa Bay Rays are 3-0 over their last three games including back-to-back wins at home over the Boston Red Sox on Friday and Saturday. The Rays will try to finish up their sweep of the Red Sox and to retain first place in the American League East with a win this Sunday night.

Boston Red Sox vs. Tampa Bay Rays
  • Date/Time: August 1, 7:08 p.m. ET
  • Stadium: Tropicana Field
  • TV Coverage: ESPN
  • Opening Odds: Rays -125 | O/U 8.5 runs (Line History)
  • Red Sox vs. Rays (Matchup Report)

Opening Odds Analysis

The Rays opened as -125 favorites in this matchup and have received enough betting action to move the line up to Tampa Bay -137. The Red Sox have settled in as a +127 road underdog while the total on Sunday night has remained steady at 8.5 runs. The OVER is 7-1 in Tampa Bay’s last eight home games against Boston.

Starting Pitchers Analysis

Nick Pivetta has allowed four earned runs in each of his last three starts, bringing his ERA on the season up to 4.51 and his WHIP up to 1.34. Despite an underwhelming 5.05 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP over his last 15 starts, the Red Sox have still gone 10-5 in Pivetta’s last 15 games. The right-hander has enjoyed surprising success against the Rays this season with 11.2 scoreless innings across two starts.

Shane McClanahan’s statline of 4-4 with a 3.93 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP this season may not jump off the page. But the 24-year-old rookie consistently pitches well enough to give the Rays a chance to win, allowing three earned runs or less in each of his last eight games and in 13 of his 15 starts this season. Sunday’s game will mark McClanahan’s first career start against the Red Sox.

Boston News & Notes

Boston fell to 0-3 over its last three games in Saturday’s 9-5 loss to the Rays. The Red Sox have been outscored 29-9 over that three-game stretch and have relinquished their lead in the AL East with these back-to-back losses to Tampa Bay. This looks like a race that could go right down to the wire this season as Boston’s 63-43 record is currently just a half-game behind Tampa Bay’s 63-42 record.

The Red Sox acquired injured slugger Kyle Schwarber at the trade deadline as well as a pair of bullpen arms in Hansel Robles and Austin Davis. It was somewhat surprising to see Boston double-down on its strengths at the deadline instead of addressing its weaknesses, most notably starting pitching depth. Boston is all-in on Chris Sale returning in time for the postseason and being in top form when he does.

Tampa Bay News & Notes

The Rays followed up their 7-3 win over the Red Sox on Friday with another comfortable victory of 9-5 on Saturday. Tampa Bay is now 16-6 over its last 22 games including a 10-4 record in its last 14 home games. Sunday’s game against Boston is one of eight remaining regular season games between these two division rivals.

Tampa Bay has the best team ERA in the American League with a 3.53 ERA. The 30 runs scored in their last three games have moved the Rays into fourth place in the major leagues in run production with 5.03 runs per game. This year’s postseason is going to be wild with so many legitimate World Series contenders in the American League fighting for the pennant.

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Betting Pick: Tampa Bay -137

Nick Pivetta has inexplicably pitched extremely well against the Rays this season. Look for his luck to run out in this one against Tampa Bay’s red hot bats at home.

Shark Bites
  • Boston is 1-4 over its last 5 games.
  • Tampa Bay is 14-5 in its last 19 home games.
  • The OVER is 5-0 in Boston’s last 5 road games.