Mining the Diamond: Tribe Rule in Game 1 of the ALDS vs. Yankees

Swinging Johnson

Thursday, October 5, 2017 4:22 PM UTC

Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017 4:22 PM UTC

The Indians host the Yankees in Game 1 of the ALDS on Thursday, and here we discuss the pitching matchups, historical trends and MLB odds to deliver the sharpest side on this postseason tilt at Progressive Field.

Yankees (92-71, +0.4 Units) at Indians (102-60, +6.0 Units)
  • Cleveland is 13-3 (+12.8 Units) in October games over the last two seasons.
  • Cleveland is 27-7 (+19.1 Units) when playing on Thursday over the last two seasons.
  • Cleveland is 24-10 (+11.1 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season this season.
  • New York is 14-20 (-13.5 Units) when playing with a day off over the last two seasons.
  • New York is 11-22 (-13.0 Units) on the road when the total is 8 to 8.5 this season.
  • New York is 19-30 (-11.3 Units) on the road when the money line is +125 to -125 this season.

When I first perused the MLB odds, it appeared the Yankees were getting a generous price from the oddsmakers. But after looking at, and behind, the numbers I believe the online sportsbooks have it right. The Indians are relatively sizeable favorites and are so for a reason … or more than one reason, to be clear.

Let’s begin with New York’s starter Sonny Gray. The Yankees used their ace Luis Severino in the one-game wild-card playoff against the upstart Twins, and after an 8-4 win on Tuesday the Bombers lived another day to make this date in Cleveland. Gray, a four-year veteran acquired from the Athletics at the end of July, has registered a 3.72 ERA and 1.26 WHIP in his 11 starts as a Yankee. His last three performances have seen two abysmal starts surrounding one decent appearance against Toronto. His record is 1-2 with a 7.36 ERA and a 1.77 WHIP over those last three starts, and his three outings against the Indians this season have seen him go 1-2 with a 4.85 ERA. Not stats that you have busting with confidence against an Indians lineup that was sixth in the majors in run production and had a league-leading +254 run differential.

The Tribe will send 26-year-old Trevor Bauer to the hill instead of ace Corey Kluber. They will keep the anticipated Cy Young Award winner on ice to have him start Game 2 and a Game 5 if necessary. Bauer was 2-0 with a 1.38 ERA in his two regular-season starts against the Bombers and held New York to a .229 batting average in those contests. Bauer’s last two starts were impressive with a combined 13 innings against the Mariners and White Sox and allowing just two earned runs. Cleveland has the home-field advantage and several trends working in its favor, including a 15-3 record this season when playing on Thursday. Let’s back the home team in our MLB picks and watch the Indians cash in Game 1.

Free MLB Pick: Indians -135Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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