Wednesday MLB Playoff Odds, Picks and Predictions: Yankees vs. Rays Game 3 (Oct. 7)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images. Pictured: Giancarlo Stanton
- The Yankees are a short favorite over the Rays on Wednesday night in Game 3 of the American League Divisional Series.
- New York will send Masahiro Tanaka to the mound against Tampa Bay's Charlie Morton, who hasn't pitched in 12 days.
- Get Mike Vitanza's full breakdown for Yankees vs. Rays Game 3 below.
Yankees vs. Rays Game 3 Odds
|Yankees Odds||-131 [Bet Now]|
|Rays Odds||+110 [Bet Now]|
|Over/Under||9 (+100/-121) [Bet Now]|
|First Pitch||7:10 p.m. ET|
The Tampa Bay Rays evened up the American League Division Series on Tuesday with a 7-5 victory over the New York Yankees.
The Rays offense exploded with four home runs against Yankees pitching last night. They were paced by rookie Randy Arozarena, who continued his offensive onslaught with two more hits, including a long home run in the first inning. Manny Margot, Mike Zunino and Austin Meadows also all went deep for the Rays.
The Yankees, meanwhile, had another huge night out of Giancarlo Stanton, who added two more home runs to his already outstanding postseason. He now has five home runs in his last four games.
The Yankees will turn to Masahiro Tanaka in Game 3 to get the series back on track, while the Rays look to righty Charlie Morton to help them earn back-to-back wins.
New York Yankees
Prior to last week’s start in Cleveland, which was interrupted by an avoidable rain delay, Tanaka’s 1.76 ERA in the postseason was 12th best all-time among pitchers with at least 40 innings pitched. He’ll look to get back on track tonight against the Rays.
Tanaka’s regular season numbers were amongst the worst in his career (4.42 FIP, 1.7 HR/9), but he improved as the season went on. In his final six starts, he pitched to an improved 3.89 xFIP and increased his strikeout ratio to 8.63 K/9, nearly two higher than his season average of 6.75 K/9.
The Rays .319 wOBA against right-handed pitching was about league-average during the regular season, but that was also pre-Arozarena, who has taken the league by storm since being called up on Aug. 30.
During the final month of the regular season, Arozarena proceeded to hit seven home runs while collecting a .641 slugging percentage and 176 wRC+ along the way. He hasn’t let up during the postseason, hitting to a .563 average and collecting five extra base hits — including two home runs — in just 17 plate appearances.
Tampa Bay Rays
Charlie Morton will look to give the Rays a 2-1 series advantage when he takes the mound in Game 3. Morton had a strong regular season – over nine starts, he pitched to a 3.45 FIP and allowed just 0.95 HR/9. He also struck out batters at a robust 9.95 K/9 clip. It’s been 12 days since his last start, however, where he pitched just five innings against the Philadelphia Phillies.
The Yankees were one of the best teams in baseball against right-handed pitching during the regular season, hitting to a .349 wOBA (fourth-best amongst all teams) and a .208 ISO, the fifth-highest mark in all of baseball. They’ve also been hitting the ball well of-late, averaging 7.8 runs per game over their past six.
How I’m Betting This Game
This Yankees offense is firing on all cylinders and will be taking on a starter in Charlie Morton who hasn’t thrown in 12 days. While the bullpen for the Rays would typically be a massive advantage, they were forced to burn three of their best arms last night in relievers Diego Castillo, Nick Anderson and Pete Fairbanks.
Tanaka is one of the best pitchers in postseason history and I like him to get the Yankees back on track and take an important 2-1 series advantage on Wednesday night. The Yankees will also have the core of their bullpen in Zach Britton and Aroldis Chapman available in the later innings to seal this one down.
Chapman hasn’t pitched since Sept. 30 in Game 2 of the Wild Card round, so he could also be available for multiple innings if the Yankees need him.
I’m wagering a unit on the Yankees to take Game 3 and the series advantage against the Rays. I like them up to -130.
Bet: Yankees moneyline (-127)