The Tampa Bay Rays and Boston Red Sox face off in the second game of a three-game set at Fenway Park on Tuesday night. The Rays managed just two hits in a 4-0 loss to the BoSox yesterday afternoon and will look to bounce back with a win and keep their footing in the highly competitive AL East.
MLB betting lines opened the Red Sox as slim -130 home favorites with the Over/Under at 9.5. Here are our best free Rays vs. Red Sox MLB picks and predictions for July 5.
Rays vs Red Sox odds
This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.
This line hit the board with the Red Sox installed as -130 home faves with the Over/Under at 9.5. Both of those lines have stayed steady as of 11 a.m. ET.
Rays vs Red Sox predictions
- Prediction: Red Sox ML (-125)
- Prediction: Under 9.5 (-115)
- Best bet: Pivetta Under 2.5 earned runs (-115)
Picks made on 7/5/2022 at 10:45 a.m. ET.
Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.
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Rays vs Red Sox game info
• Location: Fenway Park, Boston, MA
• Date: Tuesday, July 5, 2022
• First pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET
• TV: Bally Sports, NESN
Rays vs Red Sox betting preview
Jeffrey Springs (3-2, 2.25 ERA): The 29-year-old has turned from a journeyman hurler to a reliable reliever and now a strong starter. In 10 starts this season, the lefty has pitched to a 2.72 ERA with a 1.07 WHIP through 49 2-3 innings while not allowing a single run in 10 1-2 innings as a reliever. However, he hasn't looked sharp in his last two starts, allowing 14 hits and seven earned runs in 10 1-3 innings against the Pirates and Orioles.
Nick Pivetta (8-5, 3.23 ERA): Pivetta has been one of Boston's best pitchers this year and is putting up career-best numbers in ERA (3.23), WHIP (1.12), FIP (3.67), ERA+ (128), and OBA (.212). In his previous start, he limited the Blue Jays to five hits and two runs in six innings of work.
Be sure to monitor the gametime conditions with our MLB weather info.
Betting trend to know
The Red Sox have gone 9-1 in Nick Pivetta's last 10 starts. Find more MLB betting trends for Rays vs. Red Sox
Rays vs Red Sox picks and predictions
Our side and total predictions are based upon our analysis of the line and total in this game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.
The AL East has been the best division in the majors this season, with the Yankees on pace to set the MLB record for wins and even the last-place Orioles playing competitive ball. The second, third, and fourth-place spots in the division standings are the most intriguing with just two games separating the Red Sox, Blue Jays, and Rays, and all three of those clubs set to make the postseason.
The Red Sox have dropped four of their last seven contests but are still an impressive 35-16 in their previous 51 games. The Rays are just 9-14 in their last 23 games and haven't won in their last four trips to Fenway.
The Rays have struggled at the dish this season, ranking just 27th in the majors with an OPS of .678. Although they've shown some improvement over the last couple of weeks, they still have a middling .718 OPS over their previous 14 games.
That's bad news with the Red Sox sending Nick Pivetta to the mound. Pivetta began the season with a few shaky starts but has been red-hot since the start of May, going 8-2 with a 2.18 ERA and a 0.95 WHIP through 12 starts.
The Rays respond with lefthander Jeffrey Springs, who has been a pleasant surprise for them this season. That said, Springs hasn't been sharp in his last two starts, and those came against a pair of weak-hitting lineups in Baltimore and Pittsburgh.
Now, he'll have to navigate a Red Sox lineup that boasts an impressive .783 OPS versus southpaws. Boston is sixth in the majors with an overall OPS of .739 and has bumped that number up to .775 over the last two weeks.
With Boston having the edge at the plate and mashing against lefties, we'll back them at home versus a Tampa Bay side that's 18-20 on the road this year.
Prediction: Red Sox moneyline (-125 at 888Sport)
With how well both of these starters have performed, it's tough to even consider the Over 9.5.
Even with some mixed results in his last two starts, Springs still has a 2.25 ERA on the year. His extremely high chase rate, low walk rate, and expected ERA of 3.25 indicate that he'll continue putting up solid numbers.
Meanwhile, Pivetta is enjoying a breakout season for the Red Sox this year and should be able to take care of business versus a Rays lineup that ranks just 23rd in the majors in scoring with 4.06 runs per game and was shut out yesterday. I'm taking the Under.
Prediction: Under 9.5 (-115 at bet365)
Pivetta has been extremely consistent lately, allowing two or fewer earned runs in nine of his last 11 starts. He's also been outstanding at Fenway where he has a 2.79 ERA and a .204 OBA on the year.
With the Rays plating just 3.5 runs per game in their last 20 contests, I'm hammering the Under 2.5 on Pivetta's earned runs allowed.
Pick: Pivetta Under 2.5 earned runs (-115 at DraftKings)
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