MLB Baseball: Cleveland Indians Vs Boston Red Sox Prediction, Odds and Preview - 09/03/2021

by James Q

MLB Baseball:  Cleveland Indians Vs Boston Red Sox Prediction, Odds and Preview - 09/03/2021

Game Time: 7:10 pm ET, Friday, September 03, 2021
Venue: Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts
Where to Watch:  NESN, Bally Sports Great Lakes


Opening MLB Odds at USA Sportsbooks

DraftKings:  Moneyline odds:  Indians +195, Red Sox -240; Over/Under:  9 runs

Season Record

Indians:  66-64, 2nd AL Central
Red Sox:  76-59, 3rd AL East
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Cleveland Indians vs Boston Red Sox Preview and Analysis

Recent Form
Cleveland is 7-3 in their last ten games.  Logging 4 Overs, 5 Unders and 1 Push in that span. They went 2-0 in a Los Angeles Angels matchup, 2-1 against the Texas Rangers, 1-2 against THESE Boston Red Sox, 2-0 against the Kansas City Royals.  They are hanging on to the second spot in the American League Central standings mostly because it is the weakest in the majors. With 5 weeks left to go in the season they will have to dig deep to prove to themselves that they can handle the top level opponents.
The Boston Red Sox were winners of six games, losers of 4 over their last ten games.  The exact same record the Yankees had over their last ten games.  If you want to gain ground on the team that is hanging just above you in the standings you have to do better.  They notched 6 Overs, 4 Unders in the span… and no the Overs and Unders do not match the wins and losses, that would make it too easy to parlay against Vegas.  They beat the Texas Rangers 1 game, went 2-1 against the Minnesota Twins, 2-1 against THESE Cleveland Indians, and 1-2 against the Tampa Bay Rays.  


Offensive Analysis

The Indians are 16th in runs scored per game (4.47), 21st in batting average (.237), and 23rd in OBP (.305)... all these numbers suggest that if they get into any version of the postseason they will be outclassed.  They have five weeks to find something electric either in their lineup or their bullpen… but even then they couldn’t change these numbers enough.
The Red Sox are 5th in runs per game (5.02), 3rd in batting average (.259), and 8th in OBP (.325).  Those are seriously respectable numbers. And still the Tampa Bay Rays and NY Yankees will hold them down.  For Boston it has been the same all year.  Can they pitch as well as they hit…. So far, the answer is no.

Defensive Analysis

The Indians are 17th in team ERA 4.34, 16th in strikeouts 1160, 14th in WHIP 1.28.  From the mound they are the very definition of average which mirrors their record in averageness… which also gives explanation to their tendencies this season to feast on below .500 teams and struggle against the big boys.  Average is a good jumping off point for next season.  You hold on to what you like… you jettison the rest.  You sign a few free agents and you call up your top performers from the minor league system.  At least that is what you would do if you were a team with expectations in major league baseball.  If you're Cleveland you probably are happy with average.
The Red Sox are 16th in team ERA 4.31, 26th in WHIP, and 7th in strikeouts 1254.  They are all over the map.  Striking guys out or giving up bases to batters.  They are not helping the offense out any.   They spent most of the MLB season as strong contenders for the World Series… and in previous seasons these offensive numbers would whip the fans into a frenzy.  They picked absolutely the wrong time and place to have a down season in pitching.  

Indians vs Red Sox Prediction
The Prediction for Friday, September 3rd is …. Red Sox 6  Indians 2
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MLB Betting Trends

Boston is 48-32 as Favorites.
Boston is 41-26 at home.
Cleveland is 29-43 as underdogs.
Cleveland is 31-34 on the road.

Key Injuries

Indians:  Nolan Jones 3B, (ankle)  Day to Day;  Wilson Ramos C, (60day IL) Out
Red Sox:  Xander Bogaerts  SS, (Covid) Out;  Enrique Hernandez CF (Covid) Out

Players to Watch

Indians:  J. Ramirez.  31 home runs, 84 RBI’s and .346 OBP.  He is the best slugger in the lineup.
Red Sox:  R Devers.  The man is at 32 home runs and the Sox need the offense to swing away if they have any chance of overcoming the pitching dullness and catching the Covid stricken yankees.

Notable Quotes

"I always want more and plan to get more,"  -Rosario, through an interpreter.  Amed Rosario became the first player on record to go 5 for 5 with 5 RBI’s and an inside the park home run and a regular over the fence home run.  He’ll make a great Yankee one day.
"That was a great win,...Everybody was into it. It was a great baseball game, let's put it that way." -Alex Cora Red Sox manager after Wednesday’s win over the Tampa Bay Rays that prevented a Rays sweep in 3.

Starting Lineups

M. Straw, CF
A. Rosario, SS
J. Ramirez, 3B
F. Reyes, DH
H. Ramirez, LF
Y. Chang, 1B
O. Miller, 2B
R. Lavarnway, C
O. Mercado, RF
T. McKenzie, SP
Red Sox:
H. Renfroe, RF
K. Schwarber, DH
J. Martinez, LF
R. Devers, 3B
B. Dalbec, 1B
C. Vazquez, C
D. Santana, CF
J. Lopez, 2B
J. Arauz, SS
E. Rodriguez, SP

Statistical Leaders

Cleveland Indians:
Batting Average:  Willy Adames (.293)
Hits:  Avisail Garcia (105)
Home Runs:  Avisail Garcia (24)
RBI:  Avisail Garcia (73)
Stolen Bases:  Kolten Wong (9)
Wins:  Brent Suter (12)
Saves:  Josh Hader (26)
ERA:  Corbin Burnes (2.13)
Red Sox:
Batting Average:  Xander Bogaerts (.298)
Hits:  JD Martinez (137)
Home Runs:  R Devers (32)
RBI:  R Devers (97)
Wins: N. Eovaldi (10)
Saves:  Matt Barnes (24)
ERA: N. Eovaldi  (3.71)
Indians:  Terry Francona
Red Sox:  Alex Cora

Weather Forecast

Partly cloudy, 71*,  wind at 10 mph… sound like Pumpkin Spice latte time at the ballpark!!

James Q

About the Author:

James Q. has been involved with sports and gambling his entire life. A former division 1 scholarship basketball player, James understands sports (and especially basketball) inside-and-out. Following his basketball playing days, James parlayed his gambling skills into a semi-pro poker career. James resides in Los Angeles, and especially loves the Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Rams, and Los Angeles Dodgers. And when he isn't betting on sports (and writing about it), James can be found performing stand-up comedy on the Sunset Strip.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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