Stephen Nover Free Saturday Play

On July 30, 2016, in Free Picks, MLB, by Stephen

Angels plus $1.20 hosting Red Sox

The last time Hector Santiago faced Boston was at Fenway Park on July 2. The Angels won, 21-2. Now the Angels are home, where they have won seven of the last eight times, and have Santiago on the mound. Yet they opened underdogs to the Red Sox and Drew Pomeranz.

Wrong favorite.

Pomeranz has turned the corner this season helped by developing a knuckle-curve ball. But Pomerantz already has exceeded his career-high in innings pitched for a season and has found it difficult since coming to Boston giving up seven earned runs on 12 hits – including three homers – and four walks during his two Red Sox starts spanning nine innings. That translates to a 7.00 Boston ERA. Pomeranz is at 111 innings pitched. He had never exceeded 97 innings in a season entering this year.

Santiago, by contrast, is pitching his best ball going 6-0 with a 2.40 ERA in his last eight starts. The lefty has a 1.48 ERA this month. He has a 2.97 lifetime ERA against the Red Sox in seven appearances, including six starts.

Boston’s offense is much less deadly on the road where its OPS going into this series was .785 compared to .862 at Fenway Park. The Red Sox are 16-35 the last 51 times they’ve gone against a southpaw on the road, including losing the last three as road chalk to a lefty starter.

The Red Sox halted a four-game losing streak by beating the Angels Friday night. You almost need an asterisk, though, by that game since the Angels were forced to trot Tim Lincecum to the mound again. Prior to last night, the Angels had won seven in a row at Angels Stadium and also had won five in a row at home versus Boston.

The Red Sox could manage only one run against a washed-up Jered Weaver and four Angels relievers during the first game of this series on Thursday. Now they get Santiago not Lincecum.

Wrong favorite.


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