Date/Time: October 16th, 8:00 PM ET
Probable Starters: Peavy (Boston) vs. Fister (Detroit)
Moneyline: Tigers -124
The Boston Red Sox can move one win away from the World Series if they can figure out how to beat the MLB betting lines against the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday night at Comerica Park. The Tigers know that they need this one to draw level, but even then, that isn’t a guarantee that they can win this series.
As neutral observers, we have to believe that the Red Sox have been the better team in this series. They aren’t producing massive amounts of runs, but neither are the Tigers. When Boston has needed its hits, it has gotten them from DH David Ortiz (the grand slam and the walk off single in Game 2) and 1B Mike Napoli (the solo homer in Game 3). When the bullpen has gotten into jams, it has worked out of them. When the starting pitchers got into trouble, they found ways to get themselves out of bad situations. The time is now for this team to stick its foot on the throats of the Tigers with RHP Jake Peavy on the mound. Peavy isn’t the greatest starter known to man, but you can put his numbers up against most of the third and fourth pitchers in rotations in the playoffs and not know the difference. Peavy allowed five hits and a run against the Tampa Bay Rays in his last start in the ALDS, and though he left that game tied, he put the Sox in a position to shut down the hosts to lock up the series.
Detroit is in some big trouble. The bullpen still has to be shaken, and amazingly, that’s now two games in the postseason pitched by RHP Justin Verlander in which the team didn’t give him a single run of support. Now, the rotation goes back to RHP Doug Fister, who has to feel like he has to be perfect to win this game on Wednesday night. Fister was by no means perfect in Game 4 against the Oakland Athletics when he gave up three runs in six innings, but he was the beneficiary of eight runs scored by Detroit, which is more runs than the team has scored in a game in a month. Fister knows that that isn’t going to cut it against Boston, and the challenge is harder than it was against the A’s, who just don’t have the same caliber of lineup that he will be facing tonight. Remember too, that the Detroit bullpen is reeling after allowing four runs against the Sox in Game 2, and the unit really wasn’t involved in the game much in Game 3.
We really think that this series is over with at this point. The Red Sox took the best shots that Detroit had to offer, and now, the Tigers won’t even necessarily get a chance to put either RHP Max Scherzer or RHP Justin Verlander back on the mound. That has to be demoralizing for the hosts. The hometown crowd really needs to pick Detroit up in this one, because if it doesn’t, tomorrow, it will be fighting for its life.
Boston Red Sox @ Detroit Tigers Pick: Boston Red Sox +117
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.