Yankees vs. Dodgers Odds, Preview: Finding Betting Value in Saturday’s Matchup
Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia
New York Yankees vs. Los Angeles Dodgers Betting Odds
Probable starters: CC Sabathia (5-7, 5.01 ERA) vs. Tony Gonsolin (1-1, 3.00 ERA)
- Yankees odds: +124
- Dodgers odds: -137
- Over/Under: 10
- First pitch: 4:05 p.m. ET
In their first meeting since September 2016, the Yankees — behind five home runs and 11 strikeouts from James Paxton — defeated the Dodgers, 10-2, in Los Angeles on Friday night.
By covering Friday’s game total of 8.5 on their own, the over is now 47-20-3 (70.1%, +25.6 units, 36.6% ROI) in Yankees road games this year. The Bronx Bombers are obliterating under bettors, covering road totals by an average margin of 2.34 runs.
With CC Sabathia struggling in 2019 and the Yankees facing a rookie starter, should bettors expect another high-scoring game on Saturday, or count on regression and bet against an inflated number?
Gonsolin’s numbers have come in a small sample — four starts and 18 innings pitched at the MLB level — but the 25-year-old was the Dodgers’ sixth overall prospect coming into 2019.
A two-way player in college, the Dodgers brought Gonsolin along slowly, improving his average fastball velocity from 88-92 mph out of the bullpen in 2017 to 93-97 mph as a starter in 2018.
In what proved to be a dominant season, he led the Dodgers system in ERA (2.60) and strikeouts (155 in 128 IP).
The righty backs up his strong fastball with a splitter, slider and big hook:
Tony Gonsolin, Beautiful Curveball (Panik seems to agree with me). pic.twitter.com/LmjM1YKqdQ
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) March 11, 2019
He has walked only one batter in his first four major league appearances and looks poised to impress against the Yankees’ potent attack.
As for Sabathia, 2019 looks to be the beginning of the end of the 39-year-old, who has allowed 25 home runs in 93 innings pitched this year.
After a long successful career, CC is firmly on the other side of league average:
He has been hanging on for the past few seasons, but his average exit velocity has increased by more than 2 mph, and his hard contact rate is up more than 5% since last season.
Yimi Garcia, Caleb Ferguson and Casey Sadler should be unavailable for the Dodgers on Saturday.
Other than Nestor Cortes Jr., who threw two innings on Friday, the Yankees should have all of their relief pitchers available on Saturday.
Gabe Morales will likely be the home plate umpire on Saturday afternoon. He is part of a crew led by Ron Kulpa.
The under has gone 74-90-12 (45.1%, -19 units) and home teams have a 92-84 record (52.3%, -6.69 units) with Morales as the plate umpire during the regular season.
Trends to Know
More than 80% of the tickets and 90% of the cash being bet on this total are behind the over, setting this game up for a contrarian under between two winning teams:
Under that system, the under is 77-63-8 (55%) in 2019, generating a profit of nearly 11 units with a 7.4% return on investment.
I projected this game for 8.15 runs, and the total climbed from an opening number of 9.5 to 10. I had the Dodgers projected as -133 favorites, so I don’t see value in either side.
Intuitively, everything about this game screams over, including a declining CC Sabathia, the Yankees road/over trend, the Dodgers backing up a rookie starter with a subpar bullpen, an umpire that favors the over, etc.
The Yankees just won’t stop hitting home runs, and I have taken a beating on their totals this season.
But I live for these ultra-contrarian spots, especially when it’s confirmed by Bet Labs, and my number is nearly two runs below the listed total.
I took under 9.5 at plus-money before the total moved to 10, and I like the under even more now.
Just know that even if this bet looks good early, I wouldn’t get cocky. The Yankees won’t let you get out of this one sweat-free.