April 17 marked the most recent Boston Red Sox visit to the Bronx to face the New York Yankees. Boston fell rather forgettably 5-3. But it was actually a landmark date in the 2019 campaign.
For the Sox, that was the final loss in a dismal 6-13 start to the season that had everyone talking about a “World Championship hangover.” From that point forward, the Sox righted the ship to climb back into the American League East race. Through Tuesday night’s loss to Cleveland, Boston posted a won-lost record of 23-13. That’s a winning percentage of .639…which would equate to a record of 103-53 over a full season.
High-quality baseball since that road loss in New York (with a few hiccups). Yet, the Red Sox are still getting left in the dust by the Yankees!
From a New York perspective, that victory on April 17 lifted the team to 8-9 in the standings. A disappointing start, but understandable given a slew of injuries to high profile players. Since, the Bronx Bombers have been a blistering 27-10 through Tuesday’s loss to the San Diego Padres. That’s .730 ball, equivalent to 118-44 over a 162- game season.
How are the Red Sox going to chase down a team that’s running even faster than they are? The first step would be winning at least three times in the four-game series that begins Thursday night in New York. That would trim a couple of games off the current deficit. Of course, Boston losing three of four would push New York further out in front. June meetings usually aren’t this important!
Betting market money lines will provide a sense of how oddsmakers and sharps see the skill sets of these teams right now. VSiN encourages you to monitor those daily through the weekend.
We also suggest looking at “road only” team stats to evaluate teams in a way that takes potential pollution from ballpark effects out of the mix.
Road Offense: Boston is averaging a respectable five runs per game (4.97 to be precise), but is only league average in on-base percentage (.329), and slugging percentage (.425). The Yankees are averaging a stunning 6.28 runs per road game, with an on-base percentage of .348 (second only to surprising Minnesota) and a slugging percentage of .472 (fourth in the AL). Even with all of their injuries, the Yanks have been much more explosive than the Sox in neutralized environments.
Road Pitching: Both are near league average in ERA away from home (mid fours). Boston’s better at WHIP (walks and hits per inning pitched), ahead of the Yanks 1.24 to 1.32.
For now, edge Yankees. Maybe this will be the landmark series that launches Boston’s offense to a production level it will need to win the division.