The Boston Red Sox no longer are leading the American League East heading into a key series against the Cleveland Indians on Monday. The Red Sox also are listed as rare home underdogs for the series opener versus the Indians at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. Cleveland has won nine of its last 10 games.
The Indians saw their nine-game winning streak come to an end Sunday with a 3-1 loss to the Chicago White Sox. They’ll send Mike Clevinger (5-3, 3.20 ERA) to the mound Monday in hopes of getting back on track, although the young right-hander is coming off his worst outing of the season.
Clevinger surrendered six runs — five earned — and nine hits in 4 1/3 innings of an 11-7 win over the Los Angeles Angels last Tuesday, walking two and striking out five. He gave up two home runs to the Angels.
Boston will counter with veteran Doug Fister (0-5, 7.46 ERA), who is still searching for his first victory with the team. Fister has made four starts and appeared in seven games overall for the Red Sox, walking 17 batters in 25 1/3 innings with 21 strikeouts. He also has struggled big-time at Fenway Park this year, going 0-3 with an 8.31 ERA.
With the New York Yankees jumping past Boston in the AL East over the weekend, this will be an important three-game series at Fenway. Right now, the Red Sox lead the wild card standings, but they obviously want to win the division instead. After dropping two of three to the Kansas City Royals, they are 6-4 in their last 10 home games versus AL Central opponents, according to the OddsShark MLB Database.
Meanwhile, Cleveland has performed extremely well against AL East opponents recently. The Indians have taken six of their last seven from the division, including five straight. A lot of that can be credited to manager Terry Francona, who knows the AL East well as the former Boston skipper.
Cleveland owns a two-game lead over Kansas City (10-1 in its last 11) in the AL Central and has won three in a row in this series.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images
Powered by WordPress.com VIP