Justin Masterson (3-2, 5.58 ERA) and Dan Straily (0-0, 0.00 ERA) are on the hill in the first of a three-game series between the Boston Red Sox (37-44) and the Houston Astros (47-34) at Fenway Park. Action begins at 7:10 p.m. ET on Friday, Jul. 3 and can be seen on ROOT-SW and NESN.
Masterson pitched 5.0 innings in his last outing, surrendering zero runs (one unearned) and striking out six in a 5-3 win over the Rays. Hanley Ramirez (.281, 43 Rs, 16 HRs, 39 RBIs, 3 SBs) went 1 for 5 yesterday with one run, one home run, and one RBI. When pitching against the Red Sox, Straily is 0-1 with a 4.15 ERA, 1.62 WHIP, and three strikeouts. Jose Altuve (.298, 38 Rs, 7 HRs, 33 RBIs, 23 SBs) has been successful at the plate for the Astros, going 3 for 4 Wednesday with two runs, one RBI, and two stolen bases.
Boston is a -138 favorite against Houston and the Over/Under (O/U) for this game is sitting at nine runs. The Red Sox have an overall money line of -1,492 and a record as the favorite of 21-28.
In games where it is the underdog, Houston has a 23-16 record and an overall money line of +1,064. Offensively, they average 4.5 runs per game, which is good for fourth in the AL. The Astros are tough outs for opponents, ranking third in the AL with 8.9 hits per road game. The Astros are an excellent base stealing team with 64 stolen bases, ranking third in the MLB. Houston's pitching staff is one of the top in the AL, with a 3.44 ERA. When it comes to preventing batters from getting on base, the Astros are the best in the league with a WHIP of 1.17 for the season.
The Red Sox have a 28-32 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Straily takes the mound. Masterson (RHP) will be on the hill against the Astros, who have a 30-18 record against right-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - HOU, O/U - Over
In their last game, the Astros won by a margin of one run. The Red Sox are 11-10 in one-run games. The Astros have a 12-11 record in close games.
The Red Sox are 3-2 in games that go into extra innings. Meanwhile, the Astros are 3-3 in such matchups.
The Astros are coming into this game after allowing one walk during their last outing. The Red Sox have a 6-13 record when opponents give up that many walks or fewer.
When they outhit their opponents, the Astros are 33-9. The Red Sox have a 30-5 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 13th, Boston is in the top half of the league in runs, scoring 335 this season. Houston ranks in the top five at third with 362.
Boston and Houston both rank in the top 10 of the league in walks. Boston sits at eighth with 251 this season and Houston ranks seventh with 252.
The Red Sox are 27-26 in games where they hit one or more home runs. The Astros are 37-20 when they hit at least one homer.