Wednesday Baseball: Texas Rangers at Boston Red Sox
Based off of their record, the Boston Red Sox are the best team in baseball right now….the Texas Rangers, well, they are one of the worst. This has shown evident through the first two games of this three-game series and, on Wednesday, the David vs. Goliath matchup will conclude as the Texas Rangers (40-53) will travel to Fenway Park to take on the Boston Red Sox (64-29). The Rangers will send out ageless veteran Bartolo Colon (5-6, 4.65 ERA) to take the mound against the Red Sox ace, Chris Sale (9-4, 2.36 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 pm ET.
The moneyline for Sunday’s game is set at the Texas Rangers +310 and the Boston Red Sox -355. The over/under on runs scored is set at 8.5.
Out Of Contention Rangers Looking To Future
It is not too often that I consider a team out of contention prior to the All-Star break, but for the Rangers, that is exactly how I am looking at them. They currently sit 18 games out of first place in their division and sit 15 back in the wild card. At this point, they are looking to the future as the most important time for them will be the trade deadline, where they will look to sell assets to restock their farm system.
Even though they are out of contention, there is still baseball to play and the Rangers will look to Bartolo Colon to try to salvage a game in the series. On the season, Colon is 5-6 with a 4.65 ERA, 1.17 WHIP and opponents are hitting .262 against him. In 100.2 innings pitched, he has struck out 59 and walked only 15. One of his biggest issues has been the long ball. He has given up 22 on the season thus far.
Offensively, the Rangers have gotten a really nice season from All-Star, Shin-Soo Choo. To date, he is hitting .290/.399/.500 with a .899 OPS. He has 17 home runs, 42 runs batted in and has scored 52 runs. One major problem for the Rangers is they are very prone to strikeout. For instance, take Joey Gallo, who has 21 home runs, but has also struck out 125 times and is hitting just .189/.298/.447. Against Chris Sale, that is not a good recipe for success.
Red Sox Look To Go Into Break Hot
The Red Sox are playing really good ball right now. They are 9-1 in their last 10 games and have won 8 in a row. They have gotten both timely offense and great pitching, and that pitching will be on display again on Wednesday. If the season ended right now, Chris Sale would be one of about three or four players who would be in the running for the AL Cy Young Award.
On the season, Sale is 9-4 with a .236 ERA, 0.89 WHIP, and opponents are only hitting .181 against him. In 122 innings he has a ridiculous 176 strikeouts versus only 30 walks. In his last start, a 10-5 win over the Royals, Sale went 6 innings, giving up 1 earned run and striking out 12. He will be a tough matchup for the Rangers.
Offensively, Mookie Betts and JD Martinez continue to get it done. Betts is hitting .346/.435/.675 this season with a 1.110 OPS. He has 22 home runs, 44 runs batted in, 74 runs, stolen 16 bases and has walked (42) more than he has struck out (41). Martinez is not too far off as he is hitting .331/.395/.651 with a 1.045 OPS. He has 28 home runs, 77 runs batted in and 67 runs scored. Throw in players like Andrew Benintendi and Xander Bogaerts, this lineup doesn’t have too many holes in it. They also have success against Colon. JD Martinez, Mitch Moreland and Rafael Devers have taken him deep twice and Mookie Betts has gotten him with the long ball once.
Red Sox Finish The Sweep
When you are getting a moneyline of +310, I really want to be able to choose the Rangers, but there is just nothing about this matchup that I like for them. The Red Sox have a far superior offense, far superior starter, a superior bullpen and are playing better ball right now. I think Chris Sale has a field day against the Rangers and I think their offense will put up a crooked number against Colon. It is baseball, and funnier things have happened, but for my money, I am taking the Red Sox -355.