The Boston Red Sox will have a golden opportunity to extend their lead atop the American League East on Friday when they open a four-game weekend series with the New York Yankees as -135 home betting favorites at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
Boston opened July on a tear, winning six straight contests by an average margin of victory of over 5.8 runs, and maintains a 3.5-game lead over New York and the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL East despite posting just one victory in five games ahead of Friday night’s Yankees vs. Red Sox betting matchup at Fenway Park.
The Red Sox regularly have run up the score in recent weeks, scoring seven or more runs in nine of their past 19 outings. However, the club’s offense considerably cooled during its five-game swoon prior to the Major League Baseball All-Star break, with Boston hitters averaging just 2.6 runs per game and squandering quality starts by hurlers Rick Porcello and David Price.
Complicating matters for the Red Sox is the team’s recent poor performance in dates with New York. Boston has dropped seven of eight to the Yankees, and has been held to one or fewer runs by New York in five of its past six meetings, including a 9-1 defeat as a +110 underdog in the teams’ most recent clash at Yankee Stadium on June 8.
The Red Sox also tallied just seven total hits and one total run in a pair of home dates with the Yankees in late April, but otherwise have performed well against New York at Fenway Park, winning eight of their previous 10 with the run total going over in three of their four most recent home wins.
Pegged as +115 underdogs at online betting sites for Friday’s series opener, the Yankees will look to reverse a prolonged slide that bounced them from the top spot in the AL East. New York enjoyed one of the strongest starts in the majors this season, and held a four-game lead atop the division as recently as June 12.
However, the Yankees have posted wins in just seven of their past 25 outings, and failed to record consecutive wins during that stretch. New York particularly has struggled on the road, going 4-11 over its past 15, including a six-game losing streak in mid-June.
The Yankees regularly have surrendered big run totals of late, allowing seven or more runs in four of their past eight, but that has failed to produce a totals betting boon for the over, which is a middling 6-5-1 over New York’s past 11 contests.
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