Toronto Blue Jays at Boston Red Sox
When and Where: Thursday, Sept. 13, Fenway Park, Boston, Mass., 7:10 p.m. EDT.
Eduardo Rodriguez looks to beat the Toronto Blue Jays for the third time this year as he leads the Boston Red Sox into the finale of their three-game series against their AL East rivals Thursday night.
Struggling Gaviglio tries to avoid third straight losing start for Jays
Sam Gaviglio (3-8, 5.25 ERA) has lost eight of his last nine decisions after winning the first two of his first four appearances of the season for Toronto.
The right-hander is 1-5 with a 6.43 ERA in his last seven starts, dropping the last two while being tagged for nine runs and 13 hits — including three home runs — in 10 innings. Gaviglio was reached for five runs and six hits in 4 1-3 innings of a 9-4 loss to Cleveland last Thursday.
He has not won the road since his first start there May 25, losing six consecutive decisions and posting an 8.10 ERA in 10 starts south of Canada’s border. Gaviglio has served up 11 homers in 43 1-3 innings in those games and is making his third start at Fenway this season.
Gaviglio went 0-1 in the previous two, with four of the five runs he allowed in 9 1-3 innings over those starts scoring on three home runs. The righty also made two relief appearances versus Boston earlier this season, picking up a win May 11 with three shutout innings.
J.D. Martinez hit two of those three homers, accounting for both of his hits in eight at-bats versus Gaviglio.
Rodriguez seeks bounce-back start for BoSox
Eduardo Rodriguez (12-4, 3.64 ERA) had a personal three-game winning streak end with his worst start of the season last time out for the Red Sox.
The left-hander was reached for five runs and six hits in 3 1-3 innings as he served up a pair of home runs in a 5-3 defeat to Houston on Saturday. Rodriguez had entered the game conceding just one run while striking out 28 over 22 2-3 innings in his previous four starts.
Rodriguez has made the most of his three starts against Toronto this year, winning two while posting a 2.41 ERA. His best start of the three came in the most recent outing July 14 when he tossed 5 1-3 shutout innings against Gaviglio, but the bullpen squandered a lead before Boston eventually won 6-2 in 10 innings.
The lefty is 3-3 with a 4.71 ERA in 10 career starts against the Blue Jays but has not lost in the last six while going 2-0 with a 3.34 ERA. Kendrys Morales is 7 for 24 with a homer against Rodriguez while Russell Martin and Teoscar Hernandez have also taken him deep.
The Red Sox are:
- 12-1 in Rodriguez’s last 13 starts during game 3 of a series.
- 8-1 in Rodriguez’s last nine starts vs. AL East teams.
- 18-5 in Rodriguez’s last 23 home starts vs. sub-.500 teams.
- The under is 5-0 in Rodriguez’s last home starts.
- The under is 8-1 in Rodriguez’s last nine starts vs. the Blue Jays.
- The under is 24-9-1 in Rodriguez’s last 34 starts vs. AL East teams.
The Blue Jays are:
- 0-6 in Gaviglio’s last six road starts.
- 0-6 in Gaviglio’s last six starts vs. above-.500 teams.
- 1-7 in Gaviglio’s last eight starts.
- The under is 4-1 in Gaviglio’s last five road starts.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Rodriguez has been solid against the Blue Jays, and there is no reason to believe he will fail to get the better of Gaviglio and Toronto again in this game. The left-hander is 3-0 with a 1.98 ERA in five home starts versus AL East rivals on the year.
Prediction: Pick: Red Sox -270
Full-Game Total Pick
With the expectation Rodriguez is going to make a successful bounce-back start, the hedge is he will do enough to keep this game under double digits in total runs. Gaviglio has gotten little run support while going winless in his last seven road starts, getting backed with just seven runs in those games. It should be noted, though, that this pick will switch to over if it ticks down to 8.5 runs.
Prediction: Pick: UNDER 9 runs (-115)
Full-Game Prop Bet
Rodriguez had a string of four starts with at least five strikeouts end last time out, but the left-hander is definitely capable of ringing up hitters. He struck out a season-high 12 on Sept. 1 versus the Chicago White Sox and has fanned six or more in 11 of 21 starts. Toronto hitters have reached double figures in strikeouts in both games in this series and in six of its last eight overall, so the over is a solid play.
Prediction: Pick: Rodriguez OVER 5.5 strikeouts
First Five Innings Side Pick
The Red Sox made bettors sweat out this pick out Wednesday night, not scoring until the bottom of the fifth inning. Given Gaviglio’s recent struggles, Boston should be able to remove the drama from this pick earlier this time around.
Prediction: Pick: Red Sox -0.5 runs (-160)
First Five Innings Total Bet
The teams have combined to score exactly one run in the first five innings of the previous two games in this series. While another pitchers’ duel is not likely to break out in this one, Rodriguez and Gaviglio should have enough to let the under scrape through.
Prediction: Pick: UNDER 5 runs (-120)
First Five Innings Prop Prediction
Rodriguez has not given up a first-inning run in his last six starts, and while Gaviglio sports a 2.25 ERA in the opening frame, he has been reached for a first-inning run in three of his last six outings.
Prediction: Pick: NO to 1st-inning run (+105)