The Boston Red Sox are 24-5 at home, and they just swept Tampa Bay in a three-game series to take over first place in the AL East, and they have former Cy Young award winner Bartolo Colon taking the mound for them tonight.
Tonight they play the Seattle Mariners, a team that has the worst record in baseball, a manager plastered all over television in recent days having a fit worthy of a two-year-old with an interesting vocabulary, and Felix Hernandez taking the mound.
The odds makers opened the odds with the Red Sox as -140 money-line favorites. Sounds reasonable. It has risen to -155. This puts the underdog price on Felix at +143. A chance to take Felix as an underdog is too good to pass up. If I were a bettin' man, I would have to bet the Mariners tonight.
If you go by the records and the media attention, the Red Sox are the clear bet tonight, but if you actually look at the pitching match up, Felix is the better pitcher right now.
Colon is coming off a start where he tired a bit by the fourth inning and really only won because of massive run support from his offense. Felix is coming off one of his best starts. He pitched seven strong, shutout innings against a tough Detroit Tigers lineup and showed supreme control by not walking anyone. If he pitches like that again, he will win.
Felix is known to have mental lapses from time to time, but if he stays focused, he is nearly unbeatable. Rarely, if ever, does he get tagged as an underdog by odds makers. It would be smart to take him as one while we can.