The Boston Red Sox (11-20, 15-16 RL, 9-18-4 O/U) and the Texas Rangers (13-17, 18-12 RL, 13-16-1 O/U) continue a three-game AL series on Saturday evening. The Red Sox will give the starting nod to Rich Hill who has been brilliant. The Rangers counter with Glenn Otto. Texas won last year's season series 4-3 and Boston clobbered Texas 7-1 on Friday.
Hill Eyes Another Gem
Rich Hill will be on the hill after a missing a start due to COVID protocol. Hill was stellar in his previous effort, completing five shutout innings against the Angels but received no help from the offense and finished with the no-decision in a game the Red Sox ended up losing by an 8-0 score. The veteran southpaw is having a remarkable season, registering a 2.86 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP accompanied by a 0-1 record in 22 innings of action. Hill conceded four runs in 9.1 innings against Texas last year and has only allowed five runs with a 2-0 record in 16 career innings.
The Red Sox are in need of series wins. They have lost eight out of their last ten games after they were swept at home by the White Sox last weekend and registered one win in two games in Atlanta this week before Thursday’s off day. They are already 12 games out of first in the AL East.
Xander Bogaerts was stellar against the Rangers last season, bashing three homers with a .989 OPS in 49 at-bats. The 29-year-old shortstop only has one RBI this month but overall is having a strong year, hitting a dazzling .345 with 10 RBIs and an above-average .862 OPS.
Boston is scoring an average of 3.45 runs per game, ranking them 28th in the Majors. The pitching staff has amassed a 3.77 team ERA, placing them 17th overall.
Otto Starts, Rangers Earn Series Win
Glenn Otto will be on the mound for the fourth time of the season on Saturday. Otto was stellar in his previous start, limiting the flourishing Yankees offense to only two runs in five innings, resulting in a no-decision in a game the Rangers won. The young right-hander has been effective in all three performances, conceding just five runs in 14.1 innings, equating to a 3.14 ERA and a 0.98 WHIP to go with a 1-0 record. This marks his first career meeting against Boston.
Overall it’s been a disappointing season for a team that spent big money in the offseason. They did win four in a row earlier this month but have not been able to score runs with any consistency and the pitching is below average. They did manage to win two of three Royals this week.
Brad Miller continues to produce at the plate, collecting seven RBIs in his last seven games. The 32-year-old second baseman is second in team RBIs with 17 along with a .721 OPS. Miller went a decent 4 for 15 with three RBIs against the Red Sox last season.
Texas is posting an average of 4.00 runs on the year, landing them 19th in the big leagues. The pitching is an issue, recording a 3.85 team ERA, pegging them 19th overall.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
The Red Sox opt with Rich Hill on the mound and that’s good news. The veteran has been dominant, allowing zero runs in each of his last three starts including outings against the Rays and Angels. The Rangers are having trouble winning games at home, winning only six of their 17 home bouts on the season.
Furthermore, Texas isn’t scoring many runs and it will especially be difficult considering the stellar work from Rich Hill. They have registered four or fewer runs in seven out of their last eight games. Boston is a desperate team determined to make up ground in the standings and should win this one.
Full-Game Total Pick
I am opting for the under here. Rich Hill hasn’t allowed a single run in 13 consecutive innings and overall the Red Sox aren't giving up many runs. They have conceded four or fewer runs in four out of their last five games against the White Sox and Braves.
In addition, Rangers' starter Glen Otto has been stellar as well, allowing two or fewer runs in all three outings including strong performances against the Astros and Yankees. The under is also 5-2 in the Rangers' last seven games overall.