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Tampa Bay Rays vs. Boston Red Sox - 8/24/18 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Boston Red Sox (90-39) at Tampa Bay Rays (66-61)
Date & Time Friday August 24, 2018, 8:10 AM (EDT)
The Line
The Line: Tampa Bay Rays +135 / Boston Red Sox -145 --- Over/Under: 8.5
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MLB | Boston Red Sox (90-39) at Tampa Bay Rays (66-61)
Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays will be kicking off their weekend MLB series down at Tropicana Field on Friday. 

The Sox are coming off a weekend set against the Indians. After losing the first two games, Boston fought back and evened the series 2-2 with a 7-0 win on Thursday. 

The Red Sox will be bringing out RHP Hector Velazquez for the start on Friday. Across his 65.2 innings and 7-1 mark this year, Velazquez has a 2.74 ERA with 38 Ks and 20 BBs. 

JD Martinez’s magical year continues, as he leads Boston on 155 hits, 95 runs, 38 homers and 109 RBI. Mookie Betts isn’t far behind on 146 hits, 103 runs, 27 homers and 64 RBI. 

As for the Rays, they just finished up against the Royals. Tampa took the first three games, then in the finale on Thursday completed the sweep with a dramatic 4-3 walk-off comeback win. 

For the Friday game, the Rays will be going with Diego Castillo in the start. Over 36.1 innings and a 3-2 mark this year, Castillo has a 3.47 ERA with 37 Ks. 

Matt Duffy tops out the Rays offense, and he brought 120 hits, 42 runs and 33 RBI into the Royals finale. In that one, Duffy had two hits and two runs. 

The Red Sox are 5-0 in their last five Friday games and 21-6 in their last 27 in game one of a series. Boston is 40-13 in their last 53 overall and 45-15 in their last 60 versus the AL East. 

Meanwhile, the Rays are 1-6 in their last seven Friday games and the under is 5-1 in their last six in game one of a series. The under is 9-4 in their last 13 Friday games and Tampa is 36-17 in their last 53 home games.

In his last three appearances, Velazquez has three earned runs in the space of 7.2 innings—that’s in two starts and a relief outing. As such, there’s little chance he’ll be out there for longer than, say, four innings or so in this game. It shouldn’t matter much, though; after that little hiccup it looks like the Sox are ready to roll again. I’m going Boston, but value-picking the Rays here probably isn’t crazy.

Boston Red Sox -145

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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