Thursday MLB Odds, Preview, Prediction for Blue Jays vs. Yankees: Bronx Bombers Look to Get Back on Track (Sept. 9)
Rich Schultz/Getty Images. Pictured: Aaron Judge
- The Blue Jays and Yankees wrap up a series on Thursday night in the Bronx. Toronto sends Jose Berrios to the mound against New York's Nestor Cortes Jr.
- Toronto sends Jose Berrios to the mound against New York's Nestor Cortes Jr.
- Anthony Dabbundo previews the matchup and makes his betting pick below.
Blue Jays vs. Yankees Odds
|Blue Jays Odds||+100|
|Time||7:05 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.|
After winning 13 consecutive games, the Yankees momentarily found themselves looking up at the Rays in the standings, not back at the chasing pack in the wild-card race.
Since that long winning streak, however, New York has dropped nine of its last 11 games and fell behind Boston yet again. The Yankees now have a 1.5 game lead over Toronto for the final playoff spot and look to avoid the sweep against the Blue Jays on Thursday night in the Bronx.
Néstor Cortes Jr. starts for the Yankees and has been a revelation this season in the middle of the rotation. He’ll look to slow down the bats of red-hot Toronto, which has won seven in a row and 10 of its last 11.
José Berríos starts for the Blue Jays and is way overvalued on the road here, as the Yankees’ price is cheap for them to end the losing streak and salvage one game of this four game home series.
Toronto Blue Jays
Berríos has a 3.55 ERA, which looks great at face value but isn’t nearly as good when you look at some of his underlying numbers. He’s often seen as an ace-level pitcher and was traded for some of Toronto’s top prospects at the deadline. He really isn’t.
His xERA is 4.25, his FIP sits at 3.52 and Berríos is allowing the highest xwOBACON of his career. He’s getting hit harder than usual despite pretty similar strikeout and walk numbers to years past.
His ERA is more than a half-run higher away from home this season as well. He’s allowed a .599 SLG against lefties away from home, which is an issue at Yankee Stadium against Joey Gallo and Anthony Rizzo in front of the short porch in right field.
The Blue Jays’ lineup is good against lefties and righties, but their underlying numbers are better against right-handers than southpaws. They rank second in wRC+ vs. righties and fifth vs lefties.
New York Yankees
Cortes has emerged at age 27 as an excellent starter for the Yankees and is the better starter in this matchup based on most underlying metrics. His 2.67 ERA, 2.90 xERA and .262 xwOBA allowed are all elite numbers in the American League.
He’s now made enough starts to suggest this isn’t just a flash in the pan, and he’s not been surviving on luck because his strikeout and walk numbers are also above average. Cortes ranks in the 68th percentile for strikeout rate and 56th percentile in walk rate, per Baseball Savant.
Cortes doesn’t have overpowering stuff, but his four-pitch mix keeps hitters off-balanced and he locates the 90-91 mph fastball well.
The Yankees also have a significant bullpen edge in this game. Where the Jays’ bullpen has really struggled to hold leads this year, the Yankees have a top-five bullpen FIP and xFIP.
Blue Jays-Yankees Pick
New York is at home and has the pitching edge with both the starters and relievers. Cortes isn’t going deep in this game, but he can give five innings before turning it over to New York’s bullpen. Berríos continues to be overrated and is overpriced in this matchup on Thursday.
While it’s probably a tossup through five innings, New York’s edge in this matchup really comes to fruition in the late innings, where its bullpen is significantly better than Toronto’s, and anything -125 or better is good on New York to win the final game of this series at home.
Pick: Yankees moneyline (-125 or better)