AL East Rivalry Continues as Yankees -116 Host Orioles

Willie Bee

Tuesday, July 21, 2015 11:31 AM GMT

A key clash in the AL East gets underway Tuesday evening in the Bronx where the MLB odds have the New York Yankees short chalk against the Baltimore Orioles.

While the top two clubs in the NL East continue their collision in Washington DC, the best pair from the AL East are just cranking up their 3-game set in New York where the Yankees host the Baltimore Orioles.

The 2,138th meeting and the rivalry gets underway from the Bronx at 7:05 PM (ET) when New York's Nathan Eovaldi delivers the game's first pitch. He'll be opposed by Baltimore lefthander Wei-Yin Chen, and the Yankees are priced as small chalk at 5Dimes where the moneyline is -116 on the home team. Tuesday's baseball betting card is also showing an 8½ run total for the clash, the 'under' drawing a little extra juice.

It's the fourth time the O's and Yanks have gotten together this season, and second meeting in the Big Apple. Home teams have won each of the previous three series, the one at Yankee Stadium of the 4-game variety, to put the squads level at 5-5 against one another in 2015.

Baltimore won or tied all three sets in New York a year ago before dropping three of four here in early-May. Two of those contests pushed 8 run closing totals, the other two games splitting 'over' and 'under' on 8½ run marks.

 

Chen Has Been Showalter's Most Consistent Starter
The second half of the season began on the road in Detroit for Baltimore (46-45, -1.0 units), the Orioles dropping their series opener with the Tigers last Friday before beating David Price and Justin Verlander over the weekend. The back-to-back wins were the first for the Birds since a 4-game stretch of dubyas in late-June, manager Buck Showalter's side on a 3-11 slide before picking up the pair of victories.

Offense was a bit of a problem for the Orioles during the recent downturn, the lineup limited to three runs or less 11 times in 14 games before busting loose with a 9-spot against Verlander and Detroit on Sunday. Showalter is also struggling to find some consistency in the rotation behind Chen and Ubaldo Jimenez, as well as finding a fifth arm for the mix.

Chen's 4-5 record belies how well he has actually pitched.  His 2.78 ERA ranks eighth among American League starters, with 12 of his 17 assignments so far going into the quality start column. Two of those quality efforts came in his two outings vs. the Yankees, one a no-decision the Birds ended up losing and the other the only victory they picked up during the May series in New York. The southpaw has had reasonable success against Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira over the years, limiting them to four hits in a combined 24 at bats.

Click here to view Charles' preview on tonight's Orioles/Yankees

Yanks Begin Set 4 Games Ahead Of O's
New York (50-41, +1.0 units) has been treading water at the top of the AL East, unable to take advantage of an opportunity to widen the gap while the rest of the division has also been playing at a mediocre level. Some of that has been due to a sub-500 record on the road, though the Yankees do own a 27-17 home record, 4-1 the last five in the Bronx and good enough to help baseball bettors to about $2.50 against the MLB odds.

Eovaldi will be in search of his 10th win, a career first while the Yankees stand 11-7 in his 18 starts on the 2015 campaign. Like the O's with Chen vs. the Yankees, New York has split his two starts vs. Baltimore this season, Eovaldi earning a no-decision in a pinstripe loss at Baltimore in April before picking up the win at home in May. He had never faced the Orioles before this season, and the one batter in their lineup who has given him fits is catcher Caleb Joseph (4-5, HR).

The weather is not expected to give us any trouble for this set which concludes with a Thursday matinee, though baseball bettors will want to keep an eye on wind forecasts in the Bronx. Tuesday's tilt will begin with the thermometer still in the upper-80s and a 10 mph WSW breeze (out to left). My free MLB pick will be on the home team since I'm not convinced the Orioles are completely out of their funk.

MLB Pick: Yankees -116 at 5Dimes

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