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MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions | Yankees vs Rangers Betting Preview for Friday, April 28

MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions | Yankees vs Rangers Betting Preview for Friday, April 28 article feature image

Photo by Ben Ludeman/Texas Rangers/Getty Images. Pictured:

  • The New York Yankees and Texas Rangers continue their series Friday night at Globe Life Field.
  • Ace Jacob deGrom takes the hill for the Rangers, and he's been dominant since a rough first opening start.
  • Kenny Ducey breaks down Yankees vs. Rangers below, and provides a betting pick on the total.

Yankees vs. Rangers Odds

Friday, April 28
8:05 p.m. ET
Yankees Odds
MoneylineTotalRun Line
-110 / -110
Rangers Odds
MoneylineTotalRun Line
-110 / -110
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Yankees are beginning to pick up some steam with a couple of wins in a row, but the good times may come to a sad end on Friday with Jacob deGrom on the hill for the Rangers.

Can New York not only overcome deGrom, but an injury to its best hitter (Aaron Judge) and an outing from its worst starting pitcher (Clarke Schmidt)?

Let’s break this one down in my Yankees vs. Rangers preview and betting prediction.

New York Yankees

The biggest storyline here is that of Aaron Judge. After an awkward slide into second base on Wednesday, both Judge and the Yankees relayed that he was completely fine, only for him to be pulled due to hip discomfort on Thursday night. Now, it seems he’ll be out for at least the next couple days, which has oddsmakers incredibly pessimistic.

As our Collin Whitchurch dug up by using Action Labs tools, the Yankees haven’t been an underdog of +170 or more since April 2019, and there have been just 24 times since 2005 that oddsmakers have put them at +170 or longer to win. In those games, they’ve gone 9-15 with a slightly positive return on your investment.

Had you subtracted the contributions of Judge in the second half of last season, the Yankees were one of the worst offenses in baseball. This season, the story has remained the same. The Yankees were already struggling to the tune of a .705 OPS, but if you subtract Judge’s numbers, the Yankees would be 21st in OPS at .684. That would put them behind the Marlins.

It’s quite clear this team isn’t the same without Judge, so with that we have to operate as if the Yankees are a bottom-10 offense. It’s really not that hard to imagine given the Yankees are 24th in OPS over the last week.

As if it couldn’t get any worse, New York will have to hold its breath with Clarke Schmidt on the hill. As fans call for the righty to be moved to the bullpen, where he could possibly become an effective pitcher, the righty continues to struggle as a starter.

He’s now allowed 17 runs (14 earned) in 20 innings, posting one of the worst hard-hit rates in the league at 57.4%. With all that said, his 26.1% strikeout rate is quite good, coming in four points ahead of the league average.

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Texas Rangers

Now, let’s talk about deGrom.

The 34-year-old has continued to dominate in 2023 with a career-best 1.91 xERA to this point. He has walked three batters in 26 2/3 innings and allowed just two home runs. On top of that, he’s struck out 42.2% of batters he’s faced, staying above 42% for the third straight year.

This guy looks as good as he ever did, and it seems his five-run nightmare on Opening Day is well in the past. Since then, he’s registered a 1.57 ERA in 23 innings with 36 strikeouts.

For all I just said about the Yankees in the last week, the Rangers have been the complete antithesis. They rank second in OPS over the last seven days despite a relatively high 24.5% strikeout rate. They’ve walked in nearly 10% of their plate appearances and slugged 11 home runs.

With those numbers, though, perhaps things come back down to Earth for Texas. After all, its .333 BABIP in the last week jives with its mark of .306 for the season, and its season-long .247 expected batting average would indicate good fortune at the plate.

Yankees vs. Rangers Betting Pick

Given the expected regression of the Rangers and Schmidt’s strikeout numbers, I am pumping the brakes a bit on a Rangers blowout.

Schmidt did make it through his last outing against the Blue Jays with just three hits and one walk against him over 5 2/3 innings, even if two of the hits were home runs. He wasn’t charged with an earned run, and he struck out eight. I’m cautiously optimistic he can hold the Rangers at bay.

On the other side of the coin, I have absolutely no faith in the Yankees lineup, which was already struggling and is now down Judge in addition to Giancarlo Stanton.

The total here makes sense, and I will short both of these offenses.

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