The Boston Red Sox still get a lot of respect in MLB odds even though they are on the outside of the playoff race behind the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays.
The Red Sox could suffer vs. the MLB lines in the next couple of weeks as they had to put first baseman Kevin Youkilis on the disabled list with a torn muscle in his thumb.
MLB odds on the Red Sox may start to get adjusted if Boston struggles without Youkilis in the lineup. The team has activated Mike Lowell who will take the place of Youkilis at first base. The Red Sox are hoping that Youkilis will not have to have surgery but they don’t know yet. Youkilis jammed his thumb in the first inning of Monday’s loss to Cleveland.
The Red Sox will be counting on Lowell to produce. He has not played since going on the DL with a sore hip in late June. Lowell has been unhappy about his lack of playing time but that will change now with Youkilis out of the lineup. The Red Sox tried to trade Lowell but couldn’t find an acceptable deal and now they are happy they did not. Whether or not Lowell can do enough to replace Youkilis is a serious question. Youkilis started 99 of 106 games for Boston this season. He was hitting .307 which was the second best average on the team and was tied for second in home runs on the team with Adrian Beltre. He is a player who gets on base a lot. In fact, he was tied for third in the American League with an on base percentage of .411.
Somehow the Red Sox are second in the league in runs scored even though they have been without second baseman Dustin Pedroia. Now that Youkilis is out of the lineup the team may struggle to score runs with two of their key starters out. The pitching for Boston will have to pick up the slack if the Red Sox are to stay in the playoff race. Boston is 20th in the league in ERA and that is not the type of number that will get the Red Sox into the playoffs especially when they are going to have to catch either New York or Tampa Bay to make the playoffs.
Boston hosts Cleveland this week in MLB lines before going to New York for another big series against the Yankees over the weekend.