The American League East Division-leading Tampa Bay Rays will look to continue their hot streak when they take on the Boston Red Sox in a key matchup on Sunday Night Baseball. The Red Sox (63-43), who dropped the first two games of the series, have fallen into second place in the division, just one-half game behind following Saturday's 9-5 loss. The Rays (63-42), meanwhile, have won eight of 11. In the past three games, Tampa Bay has scored 30 runs, while allowing just eight.
First pitch is set for 7:08 p.m. ET from Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. Both teams have put up a lot of runs this season. Boston and Tampa Bay are tied for third in runs scored in MLB with 528. The Rays are a -160 favorite on the money line in the latest Red Sox vs. Rays odds from William Hill Sportsbook, while the over-under for total runs scored is 8.5. Before making any Rays vs. Red Sox picks, check out the latest MLB predictions from the SportsLine Projection Model.
This model, which simulates every pitch of every game 10,000 times, is a profitable 132-109 on top-rated MLB money-line picks through 17 weeks in the 2021 season. It also had a banner 2019 season, the league's last full schedule, returning more than $1,400 on its top-rated money-line and run-line picks. Anyone following it has seen some huge returns.
- Red Sox vs. Rays money line: Boston +150, Tampa Bay -160
- Red Sox vs. Rays run line: Tampa Bay -1.5 (+120)
- Red Sox vs. Rays over-under: 8.5 runs
- BOS: The Red Sox are 14-5 in their last 19 games against a starter with a WHIP greater than 1.30
- TB: The Rays are 11-3 in their last 14 games vs. a team with a winning record
Why you should back the Rays
Tampa Bay has been red hot at the plate of late and one of the reasons has been the play of first baseman Ji-Man Choi. Choi has hits in five of his last seven games, including a 4-for-5 performance against the Cleveland Indians on July 24. In that game, he doubled twice, homered and drove in three runs. On Saturday against Boston, he was 2-for-5 with a homer and two RBIs. For the season, he is hitting .263 with eight homers, 31 RBIs and 24 runs scored.
Outfielder Randy Arozarena has also been hitting well of late with seven multi-hit games since July 19. In Friday's 7-3 win over Boston, Arozarena was 2-for-5 with a home run. For the year, he is batting .257 with 14 homers, 48 RBIs and 63 runs scored. In eight games against Boston this season, he is hitting .281 with a double, homer and two RBIs.
Why you should back the Red Sox
Boston will counter by starting right-hander Nick Pivetta (8-4, 4.51 ERA), who will be making his 21st start of the year. Pivetta has won two of his last three decisions, but is coming off a no-decision against Toronto on Monday. In that game, he allowed four earned runs on six hits in 4 2/3 innings. He has faced Tampa Bay twice this year, picking up a win on April 5 and a no-decision on June 24. In 11 2/3 innings against the Rays this year, he has been lights out, allowing zero runs on two hits, walking six and striking out 12.
Third baseman Rafael Devers continues to hit the ball well, batting .286 with 27 homers, 82 RBIs and 68 runs scored. He enters Sunday's showdown having recorded seven hits in his last five outings. In seven games against Tampa Bay this season, Devers has five hits, four runs scored and two RBIs.
How to make Rays vs. Red Sox picks
SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, as the simulations project both teams combine for 10 runs. The model also says one side of the money line has the value. You can only get that Sunday Night Baseball pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Red Sox vs. Rays? And which side of the money line has all the value? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Rays vs. Red Sox spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that has crushed its MLB picks in 2021.