The days are dwindling for retiring San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy, though he can hit a major milestone when the Giants take on the Boston Red Sox in the second of a three-game series at Fenway Park Wednesday night. San Francisco won the opener on Tuesday, putting Bochy at 1,999 career victories as a manager.
Both teams have seen their postseason hopes dashed a while back, with Boston sitting 19 games behind the first-place New York Yankees in the American League East standings and nine games behind the second Wild Card spot in the AL. San Francisco is also nine games behind the second Wild Card spot, though in the National League, and the Giants are 24.5 games back of first-place Los Angeles in the NL West.
The moneyline for this contest has the San Francisco Giants +145 and the Boston Red Sox -155. The over/under for the game has been set at 10.
San Francisco starter Jeff Samardzija was .500 on the season as recently as Aug. 10, but he’s gone 1-3 since that point and has allowed a total of 13 earned runs in his last three starts. Samardzija is 10-12 on the season with a 3.72 ERA. He’s coming off a home loss to Pittsburgh in which he lasted 6 1/3 innings, allowing eight hits and four earned runs while striking out just two.
The Giants won the opener thanks in part by a home run by Mike Yastrzemski, the grandson of Red Sox legend Carl Yastrzemski, in his first game where his grandfather excelled and became a Hall of Famer. The rookie is a bright spot for the Giants this season, batting .266 with 20 home runs and 52 RBI in just 97 games with the club. Kevin Pillar has also been a bright spot in his first season with the Giants, leading the team with 21 home runs and 80 RBI.
The Red Sox weren’t expected to be on the outside looking in at the postseason after winning the World Series last season, but the team has never been able to consistently put together wins this season. Boston has tried to make some moves to build for the future, including picking up Jhoulys Chacin after he was released by the Brewers at the end of August. Chacin has made three appearances for the Red Sox this month, two of them starts, and has yet to record a decision for the team. In 5 2/3 innings with Boston, Chacin has yet to allow a run and has given up just two hits, though neither of his starts has lasted as long as three innings.
Mookie Betts has played well this season in his follow-up to his AL MVP campaign of 2018, but he’s currently day-to-day with foot inflammation. The question is, is he playing out his last few days with the Red Sox, though he doesn’t become a free agent until after the 2020 season. With general manager Dave Dombrowski having been let go, there’s no indication on which way the Red Sox are headed as far as either re-building with what they have or blowing things up, which could lead to a Betts trade.
Giants Win Again
For two teams that aren’t in the playoff chase, the motivation to give Bochy a milestone win is going to be the difference in this one for the Giants. Bochy is still working hard to get wins as well, tying a Major League record on Tuesday night when he used 13 pitchers in the 15-inning victory. I’m taking San Francisco +145 to get the win.