Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:04 AM

Wednesday's Diamond Notes

Hottest team: Red Sox (9-1 last 10)

It’s early in the season, but Boston is proving to be the team to beat in the AL East, not New York. The Red Sox pulled off a weekend home sweep of the Orioles and followed that up with a 10-1 pounding of the red-hot Angels on Tuesday. Outfielder Mookie Betts went deep three times in the victory for Boston, while David Price scattered three hits in five innings on the mound.

The Red Sox busted the 10-run mark for the fourth time in the last nine games, while incredibly winning 14 of their past 15 contests. Rick Porcello will look to keep this hot streak going for the Red Sox, as the former Cy Young winner owns a 3-0 record, while tossing seven scoreless innings in a 6-3 victory over the Yankees last Thursday.

Coldest team: Royals (0-7 last seven)

If an 11-3 loss wasn’t bad enough to start Tuesday’s doubleheader at Toronto, Kansas City squandered a late 3-0 lead in a 5-4 extra innings defeat in Game 2. The Royals’ pitching staff has allowed at least five runs in five consecutive games, while last winning on the road back on April 7 at Cleveland. Kansas City owns a horrific 1-9 record in the role of an underdog with the only victory coming against the Indians as a +220 ‘dog.

The Royals look to avoid the sweep this afternoon as Ian Kennedy heads to the hill. Kanas City owns a 1-2 record in Kennedy’s three starts, but the right-hander isn’t to blame as he has gone six innings in each time and given up two earned runs in those appearances.

Hottest pitcher: Carlos Carrasco, Indians (3-0, 3.48 ERA)

Cleveland captured the opener of its series in Puerto Rico on Tuesday, 6-1 as the Indians played for the first time since Friday, while the Twins took the field for the first time since last Thursday. After Corey Kluber shut down Minnesota in the opener, the Twins have to deal with Carrasco, who tossed a complete-game victory his last time out against the Tigers.

Since allowed five earned runs in his season debut at Seattle, Carrasco has scattered eight hits and given up three earned runs in victories over Kansas City and Detroit. In three starts last season against Minnesota, Carrasco posted a perfect 3-0 record.

Coldest pitcher: Zach Davies, Brewers (0-2, 6.75 ERA)

Last season, Davies picked up a career-high 17 victories, but the right-hander has yet to register a win this season. Davies has allowed at least five earned runs twice already, while not pitching the past fifth inning in last Friday’s 6-5 defeat to the Mets. Last season, the Brewers went 2-2 in Davies’ four starts against the Reds, but both wins came at Miller Park. However, Milwaukee is coming off a 2-0 win last night over Cincinnati, but the Brewers own an 0-6 record the last six games off a victory.

Biggest OVER run: Dodgers (6-0 last six)

The “get-right” series for Los Angeles has come against San Diego. Following a 7-2 rout of Arizona on Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep, the Dodgers have scored 17 runs in a pair of victories over the Padres.

In Tuesday’s 7-3 win over the Padres, San Diego scored a pair of runs in the ninth inning to tie the game at 3-3 on a 7 ½ total. The Dodgers picked up four runs in the 12th inning to not only cash the OVER, but also cover the run-line. Kenta Maeda hit the OVER in his last start against the Diamondbacks, as the Dodgers are 6-1 to the OVER in the last seven games when facing division opponents.

Biggest UNDER run: Phillies (5-2 last seven)

Each of the first two games between the Phillies and Braves have finished UNDER the total, as Philadelphia stymied Atlanta, 5-1 on Tuesday. Philadelphia sailed OVER the total in the final two victories at Tampa Bay last weekend by scoring 9 and 10 runs, but its pitching has stepped up by allowing three runs or less in five of the past seven games. Vince Velasquez was knocked around by the Braves in a 15-2 loss in his first start of the season, but the right-hander has given up one earned run in each of his last two outings.

Matchup to watch: Astros vs. Mariners

Houston and Seattle have played to a pair of low-scoring contests at Safeco Field the last two nights. The Mariners edged the Astros on Monday, 2-1, but Houston ended a three-game skid in Tuesday’s 4-1 triumph. Lance McCullers, Jr. allowed one hit in seven innings and struck out 11 batters, while Houston’s offense finally busted out after getting limited to one run in each of the past two losses.

Gerrit Cole looks to keep up his dominant start for Houston as the former Pirates’ ace has tossed seven innings in each of his first three starts. The Astros are 3-0 in those outings, while Cole has struck out at least 11 batters in each appearance. In his last start against the Rangers last Friday, Cole fanned 14 batters and allowed three hits and two earned runs in a 3-2 victory as -235 favorites.

Mike Leake counters for the Mariners, as Seattle has won six of his eight starts since he was acquired from St. Louis last August. This season, the M’s own a 3-0 record in Leake’s three outings, as he picked up a no-decision in Friday’s 7-4 win as a home underdog against Oakland. Seattle has bounced back well off a loss this season by going 4-1 in this situation, while not suffering consecutive defeats at Safeco Field.

Betcha didn’t know: The Diamondbacks blanked the Giants, 1-0 on Tuesday to start their three-game series. Robbie Ray heads to the mound for Arizona in Game 2 tonight as the D-backs have won five consecutive starts by the southpaw against San Francisco since the beginning of 2017, including a 7-3 victory last Wednesday at AT&T Park.

Biggest public favorite: Athletics (-200) vs. White Sox

Biggest public underdog: Twins (+110) vs. Indians

Biggest line move: Red Sox (+120 to +110) at Angels

You can reach Kevin Rogers via e-mail at [email protected]

Kevin Rogers can be followed on Twitter at virogers.

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