Boston Red Sox at Kansas City Royals Pick
When: Saturday, July 7th, 2018 7:15 PM EDT
Where: Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City
Betting Odds: BOS -188 / KC +178
Total: 9un -110
By Darin Zank
The Red Sox shoot to remain hot when they take on the Royals in the middle game of a three-game series Saturday night at Kauffman Stadium (7:15 ET). How are we playing this contest with our daily free MLB picks?
The MLB Betting Line
Most of Saturday’s MLB betting odds opened Boston and David Price at around -200 over Kansas City and Brad Keller, with an over/under of 9 runs. In the early betting action, that line was bet down about a dime, to the -190 range with the best line on the board
The Sox could also be found at around -135 giving the run and a half on the run line.
Boston grabbed the opener of this series Friday night 10-5. The Sox scored four runs in the top of the first inning and four more in the top of the second, cruising to the easy victory as heavy -380 favorites on the MLB betting odds. Boston also covered against the run line at a price of -230.
So the Red Sox have won four games in a row, following their three-game sweep of Washington earlier this week, and 10 of their last 13 games. At 60-29 Boston leads the AL East by two games over the second-place Yankees and leads Houston by a game and a half in the battle for the best record in the American League.
Kansas City, meanwhile, after getting swept three games by Cleveland earlier this week, has lost seven games in a row, scoring a total of 19 runs in the process.
At 25-62 Kansas City is already playing out the string on a lost season.
The Sox lead this season series three games to one, out-scoring the Royals in the process 31-22.
Rookie righty Brad Keller (2-3, 2.09), by our strict standards, is 2/6 on quality starts this season, but he’s been pretty good as of late. Last Sunday he held Seattle to one run and six hits through eight innings, and over his previous three starts, he’s allowed just four runs through 21 innings. Kansas City is 2-4 with Keller this year, with the
This will be Keller’s first-ever start against Boston, although he had made a couple of relief appearances against the Sox earlier this year, throwing two scoreless innings at Fenway back in May.
Lefty David Price (9-6, 4.28) is 8/17 on quality starts this year. Last Sunday he got bombed for eight runs and nine hits, including five homers, in just 3 1/3 innings against the Yankees. But before that he’d allowed seven runs over his previous four outings, covering 25 innings. On the season Boston is 11-6 with Price, with the
This will be Price’s first start against the Royals since August of 2016, and that’s already a long time ago in baseball time.
Saturday’s Batting Splits
Boston ranks No. 1 in the Majors this season against right-handed pitching with a .270 team batting average, No. 2 with a .337 team OBP and No. 1 with a .475 team slugging percentage.
Kansas City ranks 16th against left-handed pitching with a .239 BA, 27th with a .299 OBP and 25th with a .369 slugging percentage.
The Red Sox own a huge advantage in the batting splits for Saturday.
The Boston bullpen ranks 6th in the ML with a 3.24 ERA and 7th with a 1.21 WHIP while converting 29 of 36 save opportunities.
Royals relievers rank 29th in ERA at 5.02 and 28th in WHIP at 1.47 while going 19/32 on save chances.
We gotta give the Red Sox the significant edge in the comparison of the bullpens, too.
The overs are 3-1 in this season series, as Sox-Royals games have averaged a very healthy 13 total runs per.
Free MLB Picks
Boston is an ML-best 48-19 against right-handed starters this season; Kansas City is 13-17 against left-handed starters. The Red Sox own the better starting pitcher, the better lineup, and the better bullpen. So they’re an easy pick in this spot. Also, we never mind chasing a better price with a favorite on the road. We’re playing Boston here, giving the run and a half against the run line.