MLB Odds: Now’s Time To Buy Low On Red Sox — While You Still Can

It's time to be bullish about Boston


It was just a month ago, in April, that I found myself writing about why I thought there was good value in betting the Red Sox to have over 85.5 wins this season.

In short: Boston had one of the best offenses in 2021 and had upgraded a defense that couldn’t get any worse There was a lot of upside with their rotation and reason for cautious optimism about their bullpen. I encouraged you to trust Chaim Bloom with his roster decisions.

A few weeks later — after several games lost, quiet bats, and poor pitching — I looked at my win total ticket and reminded myself “It’s still early.” We do remember the 2021 Braves, right? They were 111 games into the season and were still riding under .500. They went on to win the World Series, in case you forgot.

With that said, you should feel grateful for the slow Red Sox start. That means you get to buy low. What does buy low mean? Like with stocks – you try to identify“bottom value” and purchase shares in the hope of it going up. The Red Sox are a stock that has hit its bottom price, and that price is going up. Hop on it while you can.

Before the season started, Boston had -115 odds to make the postseason. This means the books had the Red Sox favored to make the playoffs. You would have to risk $115 to win $100. They were 20-1 to win the American League East, and bookmakers had them tied with the Brewers for the 19th-best odds to win the World Series at 50-1.

Two months in and under .500, the Red Sox odds for postseason success were as follows: +200 to make the playoffs, 25-1 odds to win the AL East and 60-1 to win the World Series.

Since the AL East is one of the most competitive divisions in baseball (and maybe all of sports), there’s no denying Boston’s path to finishing as the season leader will be an uphill battle. That’s why I present to you my favorite bet at this moment: Red Sox to make the playoffs at +200.

At +200, you are risking $100 to make $200. Sure, you’re not making as much as you would with the division bet, but that’s because simply making the playoffs is more likely to happen — hence the “shorter” odds.

Now, let’s get to the reason why this is the perfect time to buy. You probably won’t get a better price because the Red Sox are unlikely to have the same rough stretch they had to start the season, down the road. If you feel like the month of May has been hot for Boston (their offense in particular), it’s because it has been. Since May 8, when they were 10-19 and last in the AL East, the Red Sox have gone 10-4, won three straight series and even went on a six-game win streak.

Let’s review the offense in May: 

No. 1 wRC+
No. 1 OPS
No. 1 slugging percentage
No. 1 batting average
Top five in hits and runs

The rotation doesn’t quite have the same bragging rights as the lineup, but they have been pitching deeper into games and seem to be coming to form. Nick Pivetta, who was one of the weaker arms coming into the season, just pitched a complete game, giving up only two hits. Oh, and don’t forget about Chris Sale. He’s a few more Fort Myers bullpen sessions and a simulated game away from returning. There’s no exact date for his return, but getting your ace back never hurts.

James Paxton is another starting pitcher who we haven’t seen yet this season because he’s coming back from Tommy John surgery. Paxton is a veteran power arm who will bring even more depth to the rotation.

Remember, there are also midseason trade possibilities along with the upside in the farm system. Brayan Bello, Bryan Mata, Connor Seabold and Josh Winckowski are some major-league-ready names to keep in mind. Their top prospect, Triston Casas, should get the call to play some first base and add length to the lineup.

The Red Sox may not be the best team in baseball right now, or possibly at any point this season. The good news is you don’t need to be the best to make the playoffs. If you’re optimistic about what we’ve seen in May, like I am, now’s the time to buy in before the value is gone.

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