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Tampa Bay Rays vs. Boston Red Sox - 3/31/18 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
Boston Red Sox (0-1) at Tampa Bay Rays (1-0)
Date & Time Saturday March 31, 2018, 6:10 PM (EDT)
The Line
The Line: Tampa Bay Rays +142 / Boston Red Sox -152 --- Over/Under: 8.5
TV Channel
SUN, NESN
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MLB | Boston Red Sox (0-1) at Tampa Bay Rays (1-0)
USA TODAY Sports

Coming up in AL action from Tropicana Field on Saturday, the Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays will be matching up from the MLB. 

In Thursday’s game, the Rays secured a 6-4 comeback victory, scoring all their runs in the bottom of the eighth. On Friday, Boston struck back with a 1-0 win of their own. 

For the Saturday game, the Red Sox will be bringing out RHP Rick Porcello. In his 33 starts last season across 203.1 innings, Porcello put up a 4.65 ERA with 236 hits in a 11-17 record. 

In Thursday’s opener, the Red Sox’ big hitter was Xander Bogaerts with three hits, two runs and two doubles. On Friday, Bogaerts posted the lone Boston run and went 2-for-4 on the day. 

Over on the Rays’ side, they are rolling with Andrew Kittredge on Saturday. This marks the beginning of the Rays' new "bullpen day" strategy and they're starting things off with Kittredge, who had a solid spring for the team. It will be interesting to see how he throws in an extended look. 

Tampa tallied just four hits on Thursday, but made them count. Two of those hits belonged to Adam Hechavarria, who also had an RBI. In the Friday game, four Rays players each had one hit and the team worked just one walk. 

The Red Sox are 5-0 in their last five during game three of a series and 4-0 in their last four Saturday games. Boston is also 4-0 in Porcello’s last four road starts and 9-3 in his last 12 Saturday starts. 

Meanwhile, the Rays are 4-0 in their last four during game three of a series and 2-9 in their last 11 Saturday games. The under is 19-6-1 in Tampa’s last 26 in game three of a series and the over is 5-2 in their last seven Saturday games. 

For at least a while to come, Red Sox fans will be nervous wrecks when Porcello is on the mound, as he’s coming off a rough season. That said, he’s still got Boston’s full confidence and started a ton of games last year. Seeing as how Porcello is going up against the Rays' new “bullpen day” starter strategy, I have to give him the edge here. I’m leaning toward the Sox. 

Pick:
Boston Red Sox -152

Andrew has been with Sports Chat Place since 2012, contributing to football, baseball and basketball across the fantasy, college and professional ranks. His goal is to break down the complicated trends and numbers into a language that's accessible even if you're not a seasoned sports bettor, providing comprehensive insight that can apply to just about everyone. Follow Andrew on Twitter for links to his latest Sports Chat Place picks. 

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