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MLB expert and handicapper Jason Radowitz is here with his prediction and best bet for Friday night's Tampa Bay Rays vs. Boston Red Sox clash in the first of a three-game series down in Tampa.

Tampa Bay Rays vs. Boston Red Sox Prediction: Which Veteran Starting Pitcher Can You Trust?

The Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays have both started the season hovering around .500. There's nothing wrong with that this early in the same. However, expectations are a bit higher for both teams and therefore, this AL East series is pretty massive early on.

With two veteran pitchers expected to take the mound tonight, which team can you trust more? Here are our picks, predictions, and odds for Friday's game between the Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays.

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Rays vs. Red Sox Start Time and Where to Watch

  • Date: April 22, 2022
  • Game Time: 7:10 pm ET
  • Where to Watch: NESN/BSSUN

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Rays vs Red Sox Injury Report

Red Sox

Questionable: OF J.D. Martinez (Groin), SS Trevor Story (Head) Out: C Kevin Plawecki (Illness), 2B Jonathan Arauz (Illness)


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Rays vs. Red Sox Line Movement

Tampa Bay Rays vs. Boston Red Sox Prediction

The Boston Red Sox will send out Michael Wacha, a 30-year-old veteran that is likely past his prime. Despite being past his prime, Wacha has started the season very well, limiting the opposition to just one run in 9.1 innings of work. He'll take on 36-year-old Corey Kluber on the Tampa Bay Rays, who is a former Cy Young winner.

Wacha has walked five batters in 9.1 innings and will eventually crack. He's not going to earn a whole lot of strikeouts and hasn't pitched more than 79 pitches in his first two outings.

Dating back to last season, Wacha has a 4.15 xFIP with 23.4% strikeouts and 6.1% walks. Wacha is not someone that you can fade easily. However, righties have a .345 wOBA and ISO of .209 dating back to last season while lefties have a .291 wOBA and ISO of .179 against Wacha.

In the lineup for the Rays, Tampa Bay will send out seven left-handed batters to go up against Wacha. But while the Rays play the lefty-righty matchup game, the Red Sox look at this knowing Wacha has been better against lefties throughout the last couple of seasons.

For the Rays, they'll send out Corey Kluber who has a 4.86 xFIP with 10.3% walks dating back to last season. His strikeout numbers are high enough at 24.2% but he’s also been bad against righties, like Wacha. Righties have a .349 wOBA and ISO of .194 against Kluber dating back to last year but Kluber has actually looked very good against lefties, limiting ISO to a .025.

However, it’s likely that the Red Sox will have at least five righties in the lineup and maybe J.D. Martinez even pops back into the lineup. If that's the case, I'd much rather take my chances with the Red Sox as underdogs.

Tampa Bay Rays vs. Boston Red Sox Pick

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Article Author


Jason grew up an avid sports fan. His passion for sports writing grew in high school and he developed a blog that was strictly for New York Sports. From his work, you will quickly realize that he loves looking at games from an analytical and numbers perspective and hopes to provide you with that same perspective in his articles.


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