Date/Time: July 7th, 8:05 PM ET
Probable Starters: Lackey (Boston) vs. Weaver (Los Angeles)
Moneyline: Angels -138
The Los Angeles Angels and the Boston Red Sox are the teams that will be going to war on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball betting action this week, as the two clubs are both trying to take a step forward going into the last week of play prior to the All-Star Break.
Boston has really been on fire over the course of the last six games, winning all six by an average of over three runs per game. The team has opened up a six-game lead in the AL East, and it is working towards putting up 60 wins by the All-Star Break, a stark contrast from what we saw last season. The problem that the team has had over the course of the first half of the season has been getting consistency out of its starting pitchers. During this winning streak, all has gone well, and one of the men that has been behind that is Sunday’s starter, RHP John Lackey. Lackey has won back to back starts, and he hasn’t lost a game since May 29th. That being said, he is still only 6-5 on the campaign, but his splits are excellent. The former Angels standout has 79 strikeouts in 86.1 innings of work on the season, and his 2.81 ERA and 1.17 WHIP remind us of the man that earned all of the money that he made from Boston in the 2009-10 offseason and not the man that has been pitching for the last few years for the boys from Beantown.
Just as quickly as the Halos got back into the conversation in the AL playoff race, it appears as though they are going to fall out of it. They are going to start Sunday 9.5-games back in the AL West and seven-games out of the second AL Wild Card spot. LA isn’t dead by any stretch of the imagination yet, but it is going to take a huge run through the end of July and August to make September even remotely mean anything. RHP Jered Weaver is a big time part of that, and he is going to be coming to the bump on Sunday night. This is only going to be the eighth start for Weaver since missing almost two months injured, including all of May and most of April. He is only 2-4 on the season, leaving him 18 wins shy of last year’s mark, but his splits are starting to round into form. A 3.79 ERA is a bit high, but after allowing just two runs in 14 innings of work in his last two starts, there is reason to think that things are going to improve.
The Red Sox may lose this game, but we have a hard time believing that they’re going to lose it by more than a run. They’re never out of a game with their lineup, which has exploded for runs in bunches during this winning streak. We’ll take the safe route with the run-line on Sunday, which should make for a great play against a team that is also struggling to score runs at the moment.
Boston Red Sox @ Los Angeles Angels Pick: Boston Red Sox +1.5
is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.