Yankees vs Pirates Prediction Today | MLB Odds, Picks for Friday, September 15

Yankees vs Pirates Prediction Today | MLB Odds, Picks for Friday, September 15 article feature image

Rich Schultz/Getty Images. Pictured: Aaron Judge

Yankees vs. Pirates Odds

Friday, September 15
6:35 p.m. ET
Yankees Odds
MoneylineTotalRun Line
-114 / -106
Pirates Odds
MoneylineTotalRun Line
-114 / -106
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Gerrit Cole makes a return to his old home to face the Pittsburgh Pirates, who have struggled lately when a right-hander throws for the opponent. Johan Oviedo is throwing for the Bucs, and the New York Yankees have had similar struggles with righties lately. Both bullpens have been relatively solid and have enough options behind the starters to make light work of each lineup. With that being the case, the under should be in place from the first pitch in this ballgame.

Check out our MLB Betting Hub for more previews from today's slate.

New York Yankees

Cole has a Pitching Run Value in the 100th percentile and looks like he may be a unanimous selection for the American League Cy Young Award. The righty vet carries a 2.79 ERA against a 3.54 xERA. His Average Exit Velocity is 89.1 MPH with a Barrel rate of 8% and a Hard Hit Rate of 39.1%. In addition, he carries a 27.5% strikeout rate and 6.1% walk rate into this game. Even though his strikeout rate has dropped about 5%, those numbers are still incredibly impressive. He has also somehow lowered his ERA since the All-Star Break. He owns a 2.70 ERA since the Break over 70 innings pitched.

The Yankees cannot hit righties, and this has been a theme for much of the season. This month, they have a 76 wRC+ and .632 OPS off of northpaws with an 11.2% walk rate and 28.2% strikeout rate. Jasson Domínguez will now go on the Injured List, needing Tommy John Surgery. There is also an argument to be made to shut down Aaron Judge to preserve his legs for the next season. Even still, the Yankees only have two active hitters: Judge and Giancarlo Stanton above a .310 xwOBA off of righties in September. Oviedo should take care of everyone else.

The Yankees can pitch out in relief, though. They have a collective 4.22 xFIP with a 22.1% strikeout rate and 10.3% walk rate this month. However, they have five arms below a 4.00 xFIP, so this is surely enough, after Cole logs his typical six or seven inning quality start.

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Pittsburgh Pirates

Oviedo has shown some flashes of top-of-the-rotation material this season. His Pitching Run Value is above average in the 59th percentile with an A+ slider in the 96th percentile. His groundball rate is above average at 44.8%. His Average Exit Velocity is 88.3 MPH with a Barrel Rate of 7.9% and a Hard Hit Rate of 39.2%. He only strikes out 19.8% of hitters with a walk rate of 10.1%, so this is where he has had some trouble this season. That said, he has a 3.67 ERA in the second half of the season this year over 61 1/3 innings pitched. Although New York can draw walks, Oviedo has lowered his WHIP in the second half, as well.

Pittsburgh has similar issues at the dish as the Yankees, especially when a righty is facing them. Most righties have not been of the caliber of Gerrit Cole. Pittsburgh has an 89 wRC+ and .721 OPS off of righties this month. They have a 6.8% walk rate and 20.7% strikeout rate. They only have four bats above a .310 xwOBA, and no one else above .290. The bottom of the lineup has been atrocious off of righties this month.

In relief, the Pirates have a 4.06 xFIP, 22% strikeout rate, and a 7.9% walk rate in September. They have four active arms in the bullpen under a 4.00 xFIP, so this should be enough to get the job done, when Oviedo exits.

Yankees vs. Pirates

Betting Pick & Prediction

Neither of these teams will shine at the plate with solid pitchers for both going. Each offense seems to be limping to the finishline, and with Gerrit Cole pitching for one of the teams, runs will be few and far between. Take this under to 7 (-120).

Pick: Under 8 (-120) | Play to 7
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