The Boston Red Sox had a heck of a weekend at home against the New York Yankees. They swept the Yanks and took a convincing lead in the American League East in the process. The way it’s been going for the Red Sox, the biggest race they might have to worry about is catching the 2001 Mariners and their 116 win season. With that said, the Astros are still hanging around for top honors in the American League.
It’s looking likely that the Red Sox have this in the bag, though. They played in a close one against the Jays on Tuesday and looked a bit hungover from Sunday. Their power offense didn’t look the same against Marcus Stroman, as he was able to make them look bad Tuesday. Stroman has struggled to get his pitching together, but he looked like an ace against the best offense in baseball. The bullpen late in the contest was a different story.
The Red Sox had just 1 hit before J.D. ripped a double to lead-off the 7th. No one could bring him home, though, which summed up a night of terrible hitting for the Red Sox. The Blue Jays had the bases loaded the inning before with no outs and didn’t scratch a run across, it was that kind of night. J.D. Martinez made no doubt about it in the 8th, though, as he hit a 3-run shot to give the Red Sox a 5-3 lead. Hangover cured for the offense.
What the Red Sox must avoid is relaxing too much after such a successful series against their divisional rival. They hold a comfortable lead over the Yankees and it could be easy to lay back and look at the standings. It would take some kind of collapse for the Yanks to overtake the Red Sox, but the Astros are still within striking distance of 1st overall. Even the best teams in baseball will have off nights over the course of a long season. The Red Sox have to be happy with what they saw from Drew Pomeranz on Tuesday night. The verdict is still out on Pomeranz since coming off the DL and he looked nice on Tuesday. Brian Johnson will look for some more run support Wednesday. Get our free Red Sox vs. Blue Jays pick below.
Boston Red Sox vs. Toronto Blue Jays Pick
Brian Johnson (2-3, 3.74 ERA) vs. Mike Hauschild (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
The Blue Jays looked much more like a complete team over the weekend against the Mariners. The Jays helped the Athletics out by winning three of four in Seattle. The choke job by the Mariners looks alive and well. They also gave the Red Sox a good battle Tuesday night despite the bullpen blowing things in the 8th. It doesn’t mean much in the grand scheme of things. Down by 15 games for the final wildcard it’s pretty much over. The only thing that has to be done is for them to be statistically eliminated from the postseason. The A’s certainly believed that their series against the Mariners meant something, though.
28-year-old Mike Hauschild made his major league debut in 2017 with the Rangers. It didn’t go so well for him coming out of the bullpen, as he posted an ERA of 11.25 in four games. He didn’t last long up in the big leagues and didn’t get his chance again until August 2nd against the Mariners. Hauschild was sharp, holding the Mariners to just 4 hits and no runs across 6 innings. It was a dream outing for a guy who waited a long time to score a win in the majors. That was out of the bullpen as a reliever. Hauschild will get the first start of his career against the best offense in baseball Wednesday. This is what he’s been waiting for all his life, we’ll see if it works out for him.
Johnson has done a nice job for the Red Sox in 2018. The third-year pitcher is having his best season yet after going to the starting rotation from the bullpen. He hadn’t allowed more than 2 runs before his last start against the Yankees. In five straight starts, Johnson 1 or no runs in three of five starts. In the other two, he gave up 2 runs in each. He’s handled the road well with a 2.22 ERA in 24.1 innings. I don’t believe Hauschild is going to be able to keep up with Johnson here. You have to imagine the nerves and butterflies Hauschild is likely going to have in his first ever start at 28 years old. I feel like the price should be along the lines of -160 to -165. Kimbrel won’t blow this one, with the offense shouldering the load to give the Red Sox a win in Toronto.