Rick Porcello changes scenery this season, as he makes the transition from Detroit to Boston. He moves from one contender to another. Porcello is going to have even more pressure on Boston after they sent Cespedes packing for Detroit in the trade. The Red Sox and their fans are really high on Porcello, but is it warranted? Should the Red Sox be banking on him to have a season like he had last season? He was definitely good in Detroit, but that was pretty much the first time in his six year career that he had a good year. So I don’t think we can rely on his past to justify he is going to do big things with the Red Sox. Note, and this is a big point, Porcello got used to playing in one of the biggest parks in all of baseball at Comerica in Detroit. That place takes away a lot of runs from hitters. Pitching at Fenway all season may produce different results for Porcello. It will be interesting to see how things progress for him in any case.
Opposite him tonight is Aaron Harang who has made a pretty good career in baseball being a pitcher. This will be his 15th season in the majors, and for the most part has been a reliable option over the years. Last season with the Phillies he had a pretty good campaign and will look to add another as he heads into the twilight years of his career. I expect him to have a similar season to last year with the Atlanta Braves. Porcello could carve out a career path in much the same way Harang did if he stays healthy and plays his cards right. It is just that I want to wait and see how he does the next two seasons. One good season isn’t good enough for me. Porcello will get his first start on the road this season here today, and a good start here would good a long way in gathering faith with Red Sox fans.
Boston Red Sox at Philadelphia Phillies
Rick Porcello (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. Aaron Harang (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
The Red Sox just recently thrashed the Phillies by a score of 8-0. But falling into looking at recent games all the time and making your picks based off that is often a recipe for disaster. Don’t get me wrong, I will ride hot teams on some occasions, but deciding to pick a team because they just blew the other team out in the previous game doesn’t always work out. I find that lines are often inflated due to this and sometimes you can get a nice price on the opposite team. That is what I seen when I looked at this game, because I find there is uncertainty when it comes to Rick Porcello. I’m not completely sold yet. The Red Sox are gambling by giving him this 82 million dollar contract. There is some kind of pressure on him. That is what only one season in six years of an ERA of under 3.50 gets you. In the previous four seasons for Porcello, he had ERAs all above 4.00. In his rookie year he had a 3.96.
Harang, though, has had his problems against the Red Sox in his career. He holds a 5.08 ERA in five starts against them. The Red Sox I think are going to be a team that scores a lot of runs this season. They got off to a monster start with 8 runs over the Phillies the other day. The reason for that is going to be Hanley Ramirez. I predict he will have the kind of season that many thought he’d have from the beginning with the Red Sox. He got off to a good start early, hammering 2 dingers in the opener. Dustin Pedroia also had a good day with 2 himself. I think uncertainty is the optimum word for both of these pitchers. I Harang going to be able to hold up for another season? Is Porcello going to meet expectations? The Phillies got blanked on opening day and I don’t expect that to happen again. We’ll go with the OVER 8 today where we are getting a pretty good price.
PICK: OVER 8 RUNS (+108)