Baseball PicksThe Boston Red Sox have struggled to stay above the .500 mark over their past 10 games, and are hoping to get back on track against a Toronto Blue Jays’ team that has struggled to hit that mark over the course of the season so far. The Red Sox are looking up at the New York Yankees in the top spot in the American League East, and will need to put together a couple of quality outings to close the sports betting gap before the All Star break.

Toronto Blue Jays @ Boston Red Sox

Tuesday July 5, 2011 – 7:10 PM ET

Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts

MLB Betting Odds: Boston Red Sox – 130

In order to get that done the starting rotation will need to find a way to slow down All Star voting winner Jose Bautista, whose major-leading 27 home runs earned him a record 7.4-million votes. Bautista has been among the best in baseball since clinching the home run crown last season, and it will be on Boston ace Jon Lester to slow him down Tuesday.

MLB Betting Preview: Toronto Blue Jays

For all that Bautista has done for the Blue Jays this season, he could sure use some support. Bautista has hit .337 with 27 home runs, but the rest of the Toronto order has been largely inconsistent. With the exception of Adam Lind, the Blue Jays will need much more out of their young stars, with players such as Aaron Hill needing to step up in a major way. Toronto will send Brett Cecil to the mound on Tuesday, and that means the offense will need to be even better. Cecil has allowed at least five earned runs in three of his past four starts, and his ERA heading into the game is an awful 7.24.

MLB Betting Preview: Boston Red Sox

When you contrast that 7.24 mark with the 3.43 that Lester has sported so far this season, the picture for this game begins to really come into focus. Adrian Gonzalez is among the leaders for AL MVP, and although he hasn’t been able to match Baustista’s numbers his are very close, and he has gotten a ton of support from the rest of the order. Lester is 10-4 this season and is coming off perhaps his best start, a 5-2 win over the Philadelphia Phillies in which he didn’t allow a run in seven innings of sports betting bonus work.

MLB Betting Preview: Outlook & Pick

The Red Sox will enter this game with a lethal combination of offense and pitching, and that makes it hard to imagine the Blue Jays will be able to keep it close. Bautista has been arguably the best hitter in baseball the past two years, but he can’t do it alone and Boston simply has too much MLB firepower to compete with as they continue their chase for an AL East crown.

MLB Betting Pick: Boston Red Sox - 130


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