Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#969 Boston Red Sox 10 vs.
#970 New York Yankees -170
Saturday, August 1, 2020 at 7:15pm EDT
Written by Nick Raffoul

The Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees will continue their American League East series battle at Yankee Stadium on Saturday night.

The Yankees have raced out to first place in the division standings by winning four of their first five games. Despite having its four-game series against the Philadelphia Phillies postponed, New York’s offense hasn’t missed a beat. The Bronx Bombers have launched nine home runs through the first five games, more than making up for their paltry .223 team batting average. Can the Yankees bats stay hot at home against the division-rival Red Sox on Saturday evening?

Godley slides into Red Sox rotation after strong debut

Boston leads the MLB in batting average at .276 and sixth in runs scored with 36 through seven games. The Red Sox have three players batting over .400 so far this season. Kevin Pillar leads the team with a .444 batting average while Christian Vasquez (.421) and Jackie Bradley Jr. (.400) have also been red-hot to start the year. Vasquez also leads the team with four home runs, eight RBIs, and a 1.555 OPS.

The Red Sox are expected to send right-hander Zach Godley to the hill at Yankee Stadium on Saturday. Godley, who joined the club in mid-July on a minor league deal, will serve in an opener’s role. He was solid in his Red Sox debut on July 27, striking out seven batters and walking none in four scoreless innings of relief versus the New York Mets. The outing was an encouraging sign for the Red Sox, who picked up the 28-year-old after a disappointing season with the Arizona Diamondbacks. Godley was released after posting the worst year of his MLB career. He finished 2019 with a 3-5 record and a 6.39 ERA in 27 games (nine starts).

Godley’s only career appearance against the Yankees in 2019 came out of the bullpen. He allowed three earned runs on five hits in three innings of work. According to Baseball Savant, current Yankees are batting .200 in 38 plate appearances off of Godley heading into this matchup.

Tanaka to open 2020 season versus Boston

New York will turn to former ace Masahiro Tanaka for his 2020 debut on Saturday night. The 31-year-old will wear a protective cap insert to protect him after being hit by a line drive during a summer camp session on July 4. Tanaka put together a strong season in 2019, going 11-9 with a 4.45 ERA and 1.24 WHIP in 31 starts. The Yankees’ right-hander has reached double-digit victories in all six of his MLB seasons, posting a career 75-43 record and a lifetime 3.75 ERA.

Tanaka has seen a healthy dose of the Red Sox over the years. The right-hander has made 21 career starts against the Red Sox, going 8-5 with a 5.76 ERA in 115 ⅔ combined innings of work.

He struggled against them in 2019 though, posting a whopping 24.75 ERA over a three-start span. Boston whopped Tanaka for 24 runs in just eight innings of work but he managed to escape with just an 0-1 record. According to Baseball Savant, current Boston batters are hitting .288 in 258 plate appearances versus Tanaka heading into this matchup.

Best Bets for this Game

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Full-Game Side Bet

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The Red Sox dropped the opening game of the series 5-1 but this looks like a good chance for them to get some revenge here. Tanaka got lit up against the Red Sox last season and he will be shaking off some rust in his first start of the season. Meanwhile, Godley has some solid peripherals against the current Yankees’ lineup, so I’ll take my chances with the Red Sox evening up the series in New York on Saturday night. 

Prediction: Boston Red Sox +180

Full-Game Total Pick

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These two teams are projected for 10 runs, which isn’t a stretch after yesterday’s low-scoring affair. Boston has had some success against Tanaka and the past and despite Godley’s solid debut, it’s hard to trust him to repeat the performance against a very dangerous Yankees’ lineup. The more likely scenario here is that both lineups come alive and Boston’s bullpen has left plenty to be desired in the early going. Look for this game to go over the projected total at Yankee Stadium on Saturday night.

Prediction: Over 10
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Written By Nick Raffoul

Shortly after graduating with an Honors in Business Administration, Nick turned his attention from traditional stocks and bonds to investing in the performance of sports teams. And has now joined our team here at Winners & Whiners. Nick uses a combination of advanced stats and historical data to create sports investment models to identify value and generate consistent profits. Let Nick win for you.