Orioles vs Red Sox Picks and Predictions: Baltimore's Drive for Playoffs Lead it to Victory

Boston's season is all but over, however, Baltimore still clings on to slim hopes of October baseball. That desperation mixed in with an edge on the mound has us leading towards the O's in our MLB betting picks and predictions.

Chris Hatfield - Betting Analyst at Covers.com
Chris Hatfield • Betting Analyst
Sep 26, 2022 • 13:48 ET • 4 min read
Jordan Lyles Baltimore Orioles MLB
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

The Baltimore Orioles and Boston Red Sox link up to kock off a three-game series tonight. 

The O's are clinging on to a slight hope of making the playoffs. They trail the Seattle Mariners by four games for the final Wild Card spot going 4-6 in their last ten games. The Sox come into today off of a sweep from the New York Yankees. In total, they are riding a five-game losing streak and certainly have the appearance of a team that wants their season to end. 

Who claims victory in Game 1? Find out in our MLB betting picks and predictions for the Orioles vs. Red Sox.

Orioles vs Red Sox best odds

Orioles vs Red Sox picks and predictions

I've often talked about betting the "spots" in the season's home stretch. It may be difficult to quantify how much it means, but the situation for each team at least means something.

These two teams tonight couldn't be in more different positions. One appears ready to put up one last bid to make the playoffs, and the team facing them has lost five straight — including seven of their last ten. Because of that, I immediately lean towards the O's before looking at any specifics surrounding this matchup. 

We don't have much data on Conner Seabold, but what we've seen from him hasn't been good. It's enough for me not to respect him, and quite literally, it's been enough for me to fade him in his last three outings blindly. 

The 10+ ERA stands out like a red thumb, but the deeper data is alarming. Seabold has no negative run value in any of his four pitches. His four seamer has produced a +5 run-value, and his change-up has done the same. If you can't throw the fastball well, you'd like to get outs with the off-speed pitches. Seabold hasn't been able to do either.

What's most pressing about this matchup is his hard-hit rate that sets over 70%.  To think that over 70% of your pitches in four starts have been classified as "hard-hit" is a bit mindblowing, and tonight he's getting an offense with a Top-10 hard-hit rate among all teams this season. I'd classify this as a bad matchup.

I'm not under any illusion that Jordan Lyles — who will be opposing Seabold tonight — will produce some dominating outing. This is more about how rough things have been for Seabold this season and how the Orioles matchup with him.

Although he won't dominate, Lyles may be poised to see some success against a Red Sox lineup that he's faced this year with mixed results. If he can keep Boston off his fastball, he'll have enough success to keep Baltimore in a position to win the game.

His slider and sinker have been his best two weapons this season — the two pitches the Red Sox struggle the most against. This lineup has only one batter hitting over the MLB average against the slider. It's not much different when you look at the sinker, either. I don't expect Lyles to be spotless, but I expect him to be better than his opponent. 

My projections make this one close to a coin-flip game. However, this situational aspect heavily favors the O's, making them an easy play.

My best bet: Orioles moneyline (+110 at DraftKings)

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Orioles vs Red Sox moneyline analysis

Baltimore split with one of the best teams in baseball, the Houston Astros, before this series. All season it's been able to outpace its projections, and that matchup was another perfect example. 

The Orioles won their opener against Justin Verlander by shutting out the Astros with Kyle Bradish on the mound. Something like that would have been viewed as insanity before the season. Those things have become a usual way of life for the O's this year. Exceeding expectations make them an easy backing when I view them as having a significant pitching edge. 

As of publication, the Orioles are attracting 65% of the bets, according to Covers Matchup Page, and I'd have to agree with some of the early betting. They have a pitching edge on the mound today. Additionally, they are looking at this season through a completely different prism than their opponent, which gives them a considerable mental edge.

Orioles vs Red Sox Over/Under analysis

The Over has to be the way to go here. I may even play some derivative markets like a run scored in the first inning. Currently, you can get it around -140 at DraftKings, and my projections have it priced at -190. 

As I've highlighted in detail, both pitchers have plenty of issues throughout the season. Even though I expect Lyles to have more success than Seabold, he will still give up some runs. The Red Sox are an incredible fastball-hitting team — his worst pitch — so expecting him to give up three or four runs is pretty fair. My projections also agree. I don't think we'll need more than that to push Over this total, as I expect Seabold to get hit early and often.

Winds will be approaching the double-digit number blowing out to left-field tonight at Fenway Park. According to BallParkPal, winds driving fly-balls out to the green monster have produced over 25% more extra-base hits than the average. Adding that into my projections, I'm seeing a solid edge on the Over tonight. I have it priced at around -220 at the current number. While I'm not sure the advantage is quite that large, I feel it's the right side, and I'll be on it tonight.

Orioles vs Red Sox trend to know

The Red Sox are 0-5 in their last five games against a right-handed starter. Find more MLB betting trends for Orioles vs. Red Sox

Orioles vs Red Sox game info

Location: Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts
Date: Monday, September 26, 2022
First pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET

Starting pitchers

Jordan Lyles (11-11, 4.50 ERA): The best attribute that Lyles has shown this season is his ability to give the Orioles length. He's gone over five innings in all but six of his 30 appearances this season. By most standards, Lyles has been an average pitcher this year. His xERA is in line with his actual ERA, which essentially says, "Lyles will keep you in the game, but you're gonna have to score more than a couple to win." He has been hit particularly hard against opponents who can put the barrel on the ball. His barrel rate is in the Bottom 5% of all qualified pitchers.

Connor Seabold (0-3, 10.47 ERA): There's nothing in Seabold's game so far this season that I've been able to point to and like. Consider that the pitch he throws over 60% of the time is his fastball and his fastball velocity ranks in the Bottom 25% of all pitchers. That's another one of those things that illustrate his issues perfectly.

Orioles vs Red Sox latest injuries

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Orioles vs Red Sox weather

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