The Seattle Mariners head to Fenway Park in Boston on Thursday night to take on the Red Sox in the opening clash of a four-game series, so I’ve prepared the best betting pick and odds for this American League showdown.
Both Seattle and Boston are playing well at the start of the 2021 MLB season, but the Red Sox are firm -163 favorites to win Thursday’s opener. According to DraftKings Sportsbook, the Mariners are +150 moneyline dogs, while the totals are set at 9.5 runs.
The Mariners just split a two-game set against the reigning champs
The Seattle Mariners (11-7) are coming off a two-game home series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. After a huge 4-3 victory as +182 underdogs in the opener, the Mariners suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat as +169 dogs in the closer, but their fans can be pleased with the performance.
Seattle is surprisingly sitting at the second spot of the AL West standings, half a game behind the Oakland Athletics. The Mariners rank 18th in the majors in runs scored per game (4.11), 25th in batting average (.215), and 24th in slugging percentage (.367).
Justin Dunn will take the hill for Seattle on Thursday, and the 25-year-old right-hander is 1-0 with a 3.72 ERA and 1.34 WHIP after his first two starts in 2021. Last time out, Dunn tossed five frames of a one-run ball against Baltimore. Justin will get the Red Sox for the first time in his career.
The Red Sox dropped three of their last five games
The Boston Red Sox (12-7) just wrapped up a two-game home series against the Toronto Blue Jays. They won the opening contest 4-2 on Tuesday, but the Red Sox failed short last night and suffered a 6-3 defeat as -130 favorites.
Boston is topping the AL East at the moment, a couple of games ahead of the Tampa Bay Rays. The Red Sox are scoring 5.42 runs per game, enough for the second-most in baseball. They lead the majors in both batting average (.285) and slugging percentage (.470).
Nick Pivetta will get the starting nod Thursday, looking to build on his 2-0 record out of the first three starts. The 28-year-old righty owns a 3.68 ERA, 1.64 WHIP, and 14/11 K/BB ratio. He’s never met the Mariners before, and the clash against Seattle will be Pivetta’s first of the season against the AL West.
- 1-5 in the last six road games against Boston
- 12-4 in the last 16 games overall
The Mariners and Red Sox are some of the most pleasant surprises of the young season, so I’m expecting an entertaining battle. On paper, the Red Sox possess some very dangerous bats, so the hosts should win this game on the back of their prolific offense.
Boston’s swinging a hot bat at the moment. If the Red Sox put on another strong offensive performance, Justin Dunn will be in trouble, so I’m backing the hosts to win straight up. Boston has won five of its last six home contests against Seattle and is 6-3 in its previous nine showings at Fenway Park.
Pick: Take Boston Red Sox at -163
Interestingly, the Mariners’ relievers have the fourth-best ERA in the majors (2.69), while the Red Sox’s bullpen is right behind with a 2.78 ERA. However, I don’t expect to see a low-scoring affair, as both bullpens should start to regress.
Furthermore, I’ve mentioned Boston’s strong performance at the plate, while the previous seven encounters between the Red Sox and Mariners went in the over.
Pick: Go over 9.5 runs at -110