Blue Jays vs. Yankees Odds, Preview, Prediction: How to Bet Corey Kluber Off a No-Hitter (Tuesday, May 25)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images. Pictured: Corey Kluber.
Blue Jays vs. Yankees Odds
|Blue Jays Odds||+135|
|Time||7:05 p.m. ET|
Two American League East teams heading in opposite directions will meet for a three-game series beginning Tuesday night in the Bronx.
The New York Yankees (28-19) enter the series on a six-game winning streak and are 8-2 in their last 10 games. They are just one game back of first place in the division.
For the Toronto Blue Jays, they have now lost six straight games, including a wild 14-8 loss in 11 innings yesterday afternoon. Toronto has won four of the six games against the Yankees this season, but all of those games took place in the first two weeks of the season, before the Yankees bats woke up.
Blue Jays Need Strong Matz Start to Help Bullpen
The Toronto Blue Jays will turn to Steven Matz (LHP) to try and stop the bleeding. I am a huge fan of Matz and love his stuff, but after a terrific start, he has been shaky recently. Matz started the season with three straight outings allowing just one run and going six innings in each game. In his six starts since, he has allowed at least three runs in five of them and over five in three of them.
The Blue Jays went 4-0 in the left-hander’s first four starts as he pitched to a 2.31 ERA. They have since lost four of his last five starts, and his ERA has risen to 4.69. In seven career games against the Yankees, Matz is 1-3 with an ERA of 6.83.
Toronto desperately needs Matz to last long in Tuesday’s game and give them at least six strong innings. Over the last two weeks, Toronto’s bullpen has been horrendous and ranks 24st in the league in ERA and leads the league in blown saves over that stretch.
The bullpen has cost the Blue Jays five straight games. On Thursday, they allowed three runs to Boston in the ninth to lose by one. On Friday they gave up four runs to Tampa Bay in the 12th to lose in extras. On Saturday, the score was tied after seven, before Tampa Bay scored in each of the last two innings to win 3-1. Toronto was up two in the ninth on Saturday before a four-run inning gave the Rays the win. Monday, the Blue Jays offense did all it could, coming back to tie it and scoring eight runs, only for the bullpen to allow nine runs in extra innings.
If the Blue Jays can get the improved pitching they need, they certainly have the offense to succeed. 22-year-old Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is a bona fide superstar already. He leads the league with a 1.104 OPS and is tied for the lead with 15 home runs. He is batting .400 with four home runs over the last week.
It hasn’t just been Guerrero though, as Teoscar Hernandez, Marcus Semien and Bo Bichette have all been terrific as well. Over the last two weeks, Toronto ranks third in the league in batting average, OPS and wOBA. They are sixth in the league in runs this season and tied for second with 68 home runs.
Yankees Starting Pitching is Untouchable
The New York Yankees’ struggles early in the year were largely due to the lack of supporting cast behind Gerrit Cole in the pitching rotation. Well that hasn’t been a problem lately as the Yankees starters have not allowed a run for five straight games and 35 straight scoreless innings. All five starters did not surrender a run in their last outing.
That scoreless streak started with Tuesday’s starter, Corey Kluber. What did Kluber do in his last start? He just casually threw a no-hitter against the Texas Rangers. It marked the first no-hitter for the two-time Cy Young Award winner.
After missing most of the last two seasons with injuries, the once dominant pitcher has been great for the Yanks this season. They have won his last five starts, and he has a 2.86 ERA this season. Teams are batting just .213 against him.
It hasn’t just been the pitching staff who has turned the corner but the Yankees bats as well. Over the last month, New York ranks ninth in the league in batting average, 12th in wOBA and ninth in wRC+.
What makes the Yankees lineup so dangerous, is despite the ups and downs of the season, they have so many guys capable of going on an unbelievable tear.
First it was Giancarlo Stanton carrying the Yankees offense, then it was Aaron Judge and now it is Gleyber Torres. Judge is batting .457 (second in the league) with a 1.341 OPS over the last two weeks, and in the last week Torres is hitting .611 with a 1.465 OPS. Torres has 11 hits in his last 18 at bats.
Oh, and they still have last year’s batting champion DJ LeMahieu and home run champion Luke Voit lurking as well.
Blue Jays-Yankees Pick
Normally I would look to fade a pitcher coming off a no-hitter. But Kluber is a veteran pitcher, a two-time Cy Young Award winner and is having a great year for the Yankees.
I am a big fan of Matz and think he is better than his recent outings have shown, but this Yankees lineup has had a ton of success against him. Between his time with the Mets and Blue Jays, this Yankees team has a .341 average against him with a .454 wOBA. LeMahieu is hitting .600 against him.
Even if Matz is able to return to the form we saw at the start of the season, what is likely to come in the later innings has been a nightmare for Toronto recently. The Yankees on the other hand, have arguably the best bullpen in baseball, and will be fully rested coming off a day of rest.
I know it’s a big number, but I think the best play is to back the Yankees at -160 or better.
Pick: New York Yankees ML -160