The Tampa Bay Rays take on the Boston Red Sox. Check out our MLB odds series for our Rays Red Sox prediction and pick.

Tyler Glasnow gets the assignment for the Rays, while Rich Hill gets the call for the Red Sox.

Tyler Glasnow finally returned to the Rays after a season-long injury absence. He pitched this past week against the Cleveland Guardians, who might be the Rays’ opponent in the American League Wild Card Series. Glasnow pitched three innings and gave up one run. It will be interesting to see how many innings he can pitch here, and how many innings manager Kevin Cash will allow him to pitch. If Glasnow can be a four- or five-inning pitcher, that would be a huge addition for the Rays as they enter the playoffs. That’s 12 to 15 outs the Rays have, which they previously lacked in the 2022 season.

Rich Hill is an enigmatic but successful pitcher — not on an absolute scale, with an ERA which has been above four runs nearly the whole season, but in terms of being able to remain a serviceable pitcher into his 40s. Hill’s best days are clearly behind him, and he’s not one of the better pitchers in the game, but being better than terrible is an achievement for someone with his longevity in the sport. Hill will look awful sometimes, with his off-speed stuff sitting up in the strike zone as a meatball for hitters to crush. Those bad outings make it all the more impressive when Hill — in some ways an older version of Nestor Cortes with the Yankees — is able to use all his different arm angles and release points to confuse hitters. He still is capable of getting hitters out. Three times in his last seven starts, he has pitched a scoreless outing of five or more innings. He shut out the Orioles twice in two starts totaling 11 innings. Those two games dealt a fatal blow to Baltimore’s pursuit of a wild card berth. Hill also shut out the Rays in seven innings in August, in what might be his very best outing of the whole season. Hill’s full stat line is ugly, but he is a survivor in the industry. That’s worth plenty of appreciation.

Courtesy of FanDuel, here are the Rays-Red Sox MLB odds.

MLB Odds: Rays-Red Sox Odds

Tampa Bay Rays: -1.5 (-146)

Boston Red Sox: +1.5 (-122)

Over: 7.5 (-115)

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Under: 7.5 (-105)

Why The Rays Could Cover the Spread

Tyler Glasnow could be this team’s secret weapon in October. The other point to make here is that Rich Hill baffled the Rays over a month ago. The chances of Hill replicating that feat or coming anywhere close to it are very low. Surely, the Rays will be able to study tape from that performance in August and do a much better job of identifying the release points and finding ways to hit Hill hard.

Why The Red Sox Could Cover the Spread

After the weekend, it’s clear that the Rays will not be able to get home-field advantage for the playoffs. This means they are much better off as the No. 6 seed in the American League rather than the No. 5 seed. The Rays have no real incentive to win. They can rest their veterans and play their young kids and coast through this series without taxing themselves for a Friday wild card playoff weekend in Cleveland or Toronto.

Final Rays-Red Sox Prediction & Pick

This is a game to stay away from, given that the Rays have no incentive to win. If you insist on a pick, go with the Red Sox.

Final Rays-Red Sox Prediction & Pick: Red Sox +1.5