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Sunday MLB Mariners vs. Yankees Odds, Preview, Prediction: New York Chasing Sweep Against Seattle (Sunday, August 8)

Sunday MLB Mariners vs. Yankees Odds, Preview, Prediction: New York Chasing Sweep Against Seattle (Sunday, August 8) article feature image

Adam Hunger/Getty Images. Pictured: Anthony Rizzo.

  • New York hosts Seattle on Sunday, looking to finish a four-game sweep in this American League matchup.
  • The Yankees have won five consecutive games to move right back into the thick ofthe AL Wild Card race, while Seattle is quickly tumbling the wrong way down the standings.
  • Matthew Trebby explains below why he thinks this series finale is poised to stay under the total.

Mariners vs. Yankees Odds

Mariners Odds+145
Yankees Odds-165
Time1:05 p.m. ET
Odds as of Saturday via DraftKings.

Few thought this early August series between the Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees would still be a matchup of postseason hopefuls.

These teams are headed in different directions right now, though. New York has now won five consecutive contests and sits 12 games over .500, sparked by some slightly surprising deadline moves that told the world they weren’t taking a year off.

Meanwhile, Seattle always seemed inevitable to fade down the stretch. The Mariners have now lost four in a row, and while they are four games over .500, their run differential is minus-51.

The Yankees are in striking distance not just in the wild-card race, but they’re inching closer and closer to the top of the American League East. They can seal an impressive four-game sweep on Sunday afternoon that would all but end the Mariners’ longshot playoff aspirations.

Let’s break down this series finale in the Bronx.

Mariners Enter Final Playoff-Race Stand

The last time the Mariners won was the last time Yusei Kikuchi pitched, which comes as no shock given how well the Japanese southpaw has thrown in 2021.

Kikuchi’s ERA was down to 3.18 in early July, before he allowed 12 combined runs between a pair of starts against these Yankees and the Angels. It’s still at a respectable 3.89, which is especially welcome after he registered a 5.39 ERA between his first 41 career starts from 2019-20.

The left-hander’s success has been backed up by a strong 3.43 xFIP, although his xERA is 4.28. Kikuchi’s strikeouts per nine innings are up, and his walks per nine are down.

At the plate, the Mariners did make a noteworthy addition at the trade deadline, although it was at the expense of their bullpen and team camaraderie.

Entering Saturday, the Mariners ranked 20th in MLB with a .717 OPS. Abraham Toro is the reason that number is even that high.

Toro was acquired from the Astros and has raked since then, entering Saturday with a 1.245 OPS in his first 10 games with the Mariners. Kyle Seager had five home runs and 15 RBIs in his previous 13 games entering Saturday, and rookie Jarred Kelenic has even shown some signs of promise at the plate lately.

Against right-handed starters, like the one they’ll face on Sunday afternoon, the Mariners’ OPS over the past month is .702, which ranks 25th in MLB.

Can Yankees Improve Against Lefties?

The Yankees are 6-1 in August and have won 10 of their last 12 games after a comeback win on Saturday afternoon. The additions of Joey Gallo and Anthony Rizzo came right as the team was completing a sweep of the Marlins in Miami, and the latter has kept this Yankees lineup hot since donning pinstripes.

Even after going 0-for-4 on Saturday, Rizzo is still hitting 9-for-32 since joining the Bronx Bombers with three home runs and six RBIs in nine games. Gallo has struggled of late, as has Aaron Judge, so it’s been Rizzo and Giancarlo Stanton who have paced the lineup.

Bad news for the Yankees is that they have not had great success against left-handed pitching of late. Over the previous 30 days entering Saturday’s game, New York ranked 20th in MLB with a .724 OPS against southpaws.

While both of the Yankees’ new sluggers hit left-handed, Gallo has an .857 OPS this season against southpaws and Rizzo is actually raking against them at a staggering .973.

Another note: Gallo entered Saturday with a 1.022 OPS this season during day games, while Rizzo was at .856. Entering Saturday, the Bronx Bombers had a team OPS of .642 that ranked 29th in MLB this season during day games.

The Yankees will hope right-hander Luis Gil is able to replicate the success he had in his major-league debut. The right-hander is New York’s No. 6 prospect, according to MLB Pipeline, and came to the majors on the back of a 5.64 ERA over eight starts at Triple-A.

Gil spun six scoreless innings on Tuesday against the Orioles, though, and is going to get another chance against the Mariners. His best pitch is a fastball that grades out at 75 (out of 80), according to Pipeline. Gil threw 46 heaters out of his 88 pitches against Baltimore to go with a slider (29 times) and changeup (13) as his off-speed stuff.

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Mariners-Yankees Pick

At 10, this total is simply too high. The Mariners’ lineup isn’t very deep to begin with, and I don’t love the Yankees’ struggles during day games. Aside from a four-run seventh inning on Saturday afternoon, they were mostly dormant yet again.

The Yankees have gone under this total nine times in their last 12 games, including in every one of their wins. The last time a Mariners game went over 10 runs was July 30. Seattle has had games go under that number seven times since then, and their win over the Rays last Monday hit 10 on the dot.

The first three games of this series have gone under 10, and I think both starting pitchers are capable enough to keep it down. Let’s live a little and bet the under here. I’d play it down to 9.5.

Pick: Under 10 (-120 — play to 9.5)

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