We are two games in and both series have changed locations! We have previewed the two ALDS for today, Sunday, October 10th, and found our best MLB picks for each!
Look below to find our free MLB Picks for today’s two American League Division Series playoff games.
Tampa Bay Rays @ Boston Red Sox (Game 3) – 4pm EDT
This Sunday afternoon clash between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Boston Red Sox will be the third game in the Division Series. The series is levelled up one game apiece, after the Rays won the first game, 5-0, and the Red Sox dominated in the second, winning the game 14-6. The series now moves to Boston for the next two games, before returning to Tampa Bay for the fifth game.
The Red Sox were able to level the series and it really wasn’t surprising. The Boston batting lineup has been the best of all teams in the postseason and their offensive firepower was on full display in Game Two, it is just whether it can hold now returning home.
Especially considering Tampa are starting Drew Rasmussen for this clash, and he has been a revelation in the back half of the season. He featured in 35 games this season however he only started in 10 of them. In saying that, each of his last eight appearances were starts and he only gave up six runs across 37 innings of work. He faced Boston three times over that stretch and only gave up one run each time, pitching four, four and five innings respectively.
Meanwhile, Boston is starting their Wild Card Playoff hero, Nathan Eovaldi. In 5.1 innings against the Yankees, Eovaldi only gave up one run on four hits, helping Boston advance to this stage. Can he help them advance any further? He faced Tampa four times this season and gave up one or fewer runs on three of the four occasions. The other game he did give up six runs across 5.1 innings of work, but the most recent performance, last month at home, he didn’t allow a single run in seven innings of work and that should hold true here.
Both starting pitchers are playing exceptionally well at the moment and have a good history against their respective opponents in this clash. On the other hand, both batting lineups, especially Boston’s, are on fire. That makes this a tough one to pick but I am expecting the Red Sox’s batting to hold them strong in this one.
Tim’s MLB Pick: Boston Red Sox (-112)
The topsy-turvy series continues as we move to Boston for the first of two games. The Red Sox will be looking to take advantage of the home crowd and get one or even two wins before going back to Tampa Bay. It has been an interesting series so far, as the Red Sox were able to come back from a scoreless first game to put up a mammoth 14 runs in the second.
Baz didn’t really work out well for the Rays in the second game, he allowed three runs on six hits across just over two innings. Nerves would have definitely played a part in this, but hopefully he will get another chance to prove himself later. The Rays are a powerful team with the bat and the ball. They are in the top five throughout the entire regular season for ERA, WHIP and runs allowed. It will be interesting to see what the response will be from the Rays, especially considering they are playing on the road.
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) October 9, 2021
Eovaldi gets the nod here for this game, and when he played against the Yankees in his last start, he limited them to just one run across five and a third innings, which helped get the Red Sox the 6-2 result in the AL Wild Card game. The Red Sox are also a very good team when it comes to offense, and they sit in the top five teams in the league for a variety of different stats. It is always different when it comes to the playoffs, but we saw just how explosive the Red Sox could be in the second game of this series.
I’m expecting to see the same sort of performance from the Red Sox, especially considering they will now be playing in front of a home crowd. The Red Sox have also won seven of their previous 10 games played at home, and they have won five of their previous six games overall. Meanwhile, the Rays have won just one of their previous five games played on a Sunday. Back the Red Sox here.
Katherine’s MLB Pick: Boston Red Sox (-112)
The Red Sox had a mammoth hitting game with 14 runs against Shane Baz to equalize the series against the Rays and steal a game on the road. The Red Sox now head home to try and take the series lead and shock the Rays. In this key game for the Red Sox they will be starting their best pitcher Nathan Eovaldi, who has been strong this season with a 3.75 ERA and 195 strikeouts. Eovaldi isn’t the best in the league by a stretch but does well against the Rays with 8 runs allowed and 31 strikeouts in 26 innings against the Rays this season.
This is an extremely good sign for the Red Sox who have sprung to life on the other side of the ball. The Rays won’t be laying down and will be wanting to bounce back with a win. They are starting Drew Rasmussen. Rasmussen has been great this season with a 2.84 ERA, 1.08 WHIP and 4-1 record. Rasmussen has been good against the Red Sox as well with 4 allowed runs and 14 strikeouts in 15 innings. This will definitely be a tight game and I think it will be a low scoring affair.
Houston Astros @ Chicago White Sox (Game 3) – 8pm EDT
This Sunday evening clash between the Houston Astros and the Chicago White Sox will be the third game in the Division Series. The series is currently being led by the Astros 2-0, after they won the first game 6-1, and the second game, 9-4. The series now moves to Chicago for the next two games, before returning to Houston for the fifth game.
I thought that Chicago would be able to level the series in Game Two and while they recorded more hits than Houston, 11-10, they couldn’t put the results on the board, losing 4-9. With their backs against the wall, facing elimination, at home, will they be able to show something?
They are starting Dylan Cease for this clash and that is a good thing. From his 32 games during the regular season, Cease finished with a 13-7 record and 3.91 ERA but that improved to 3.34 over his last seven games, where he had a 4-1 record. Over that stretch, he only gave up more than one run in two of those games and he brings some good form into this clash.
On the other hand, Houston has the second best batting lineup in the postseason and has Luis Garcia starting for this clash. From his 28 starts, in 30 games, Garcia had an 11-8 record and 3.30 ERA. He also had improved over his last seven games, posting a 3.03 ERA over that stretch. However, over that seven game stretch, he gave up more than one run in four of those games, which is far worse than Cease over the same stretch.
While the starting pitchers aren’t everything, they do control a strong portion of the game and given I have the White Sox with the edge in that category, I have them winning the game.
Tim’s MLB Pick: Chicago White Sox (-122)
The Astros have been all over the White Sox so far this series, but will things change now that the White Sox have two games playing at home? Well, it will have to if the White Sox have any chance of making through to the next stage in the playoffs. White Sox fans will be cheering their team hard in hopes they can keep the series alive.
The Astros have been one of the most competitive teams in baseball over the past year years, and are well on their way to moving on to the next stage of the playoffs. It has been a very balanced performance in the first two games and they have star player after star player. They lead the league in team batting average and on the other side of things, it will be Garcia that will be on the mound for this match. This season brought a 3.30 ERA for Garcia, and he last faced off against the White Sox back in June, which saw him throw seven shutout innings and eight strikeouts.
See you here tomorrow. pic.twitter.com/2BAJNOAPK7
— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) October 10, 2021
All the pressure is on the White Sox for this game and after losing the first two games, the odds to make it out of the ALDS keep climbing and climbing. Robert has been a stand out from the White Sox, he has recorded five hits in his first seven at bats. Cease will be the starting pitcher for the White Sox, and his work down the stretch, he has posted a 0.63 ERA in the last 14.1 innings on the mound.
The Astros are the underdogs in this match. I know the home crowd will favor the White Sox, but still, were the odds makers even watching the first two games? The Astros were clearly the better team, and I don’t think being on the road will faze them one bit. Expect more runs to be piled on by the Astros in this one.
Katherine’s MLB Pick: Houston Astros (+104)
The Astros are cruising along in this series with a 9-4 win in game 2 after a 6-1 win in game 1. The Astros are truly embarrassing the White Sox who haven’t been a match. Now the White Sox head home to try and regroup and get a win to stay alive. The White Sox are in scary territory as they start Dylan Cease at pitcher. Cease had a 3.91 ERA, 1.25 WHIP and 226 strikeouts this season. Cease is an interesting choice as he hasn’t been great against the White Sox this year with 9 runs allowed in 9 innings this season. Cease’s best quality is his strikeout ability and the White Sox look like they’ll be banking on Cease making big plays to try to win a game.
The Astros will be starting Luis Garcia who has been good with a 3.3 ERA, 1.17 WHIP and 167 strikeouts this season. Garcia has been good against the White Sox with just 1 allowed run in 7 innings in his lone game against them. I think the White Sox will either come out guns blazing and beat the Astros by a big margin like they did in their 2 regular season wins against the Astros, or they will lose in embarrassing form. I will be taking the latter as my choice. Astros to win is good value here.
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.