MLB Betting: Blue Jay & Yankees Clash Features Strong O/U Trends To Tail

JA Happ

Wednesday, August 17, 2016 12:43 PM GMT

A few trends converge in this game favor a specific lean on the total, although the strength of the Toronto starting pitcher says otherwise. Read on for our exclusive MLB Pick on this game.

The Toronto Blue Jays continue their visit with the New York Yankees on Wednesday night in an attempt to stay atop the very competitive AL East division. Sitting at 5.5 games back in the division coming into Tuesday’s play is the New York Yankees, who happen to be one of the luckiest teams in baseball. I say that because even with a -29 run differential on the season the Yankees have a record over .500. They are the only team in the MLB with a discrepancy that large, and they have their strong play at home to thank for it, as they are 35-35 at home coming into Tuesday night after going 26-32 on the road

That is except for Texas, who won by one run last night to bring their record in one-run games at an incredible 27-8 when their run differential indicates they should be one game over .500.

The Blue Jays are favored in this game, with the best value on MLB Odds backing them found at Pinnacle at -147 on the moneyline. The O/U total has opened at 9 runs and stayed there, with most juice shading the under the night before the game.

Starting in this game for the favored Blue Jays is turn-around candidate of the year, J.A. Happ. Happ has had an excellent season so far, posting a 2.96 ERA, 124/43 K/ERA rate, 1.14 WHIP, and .227 batting average allowed. It’s the best Happ has pitched since 2009 with the Phillies, by a wide margin. Some have attributed his success to him reverting back to his 4-seam fastball, which he is throwing at a larger pace than in the past few years and at a higher velocity even with Happ’s increase in age. Whatever he is doing is working, though, as all of the peripheral statistics agree that Happ is a hard pitcher to hit right now.

Opposing teams have stacked right-handed batters against the lefty this season, which hasn’t paid off so far. On the season, Happ has pitched to lefties for 25.2 innings, and righties for 117.1 innings. However, Happ has allowed just a .225 average against righties and a .240 batting average against lefties. This kind of reverse split is rare but indicative that Happ is in full control of his pitches this year.

Another pitcher that gets righties stacked against him is New York Yankee veteran, C.C. Sabathia. On the season, Sabathia has faced lefties for just 21.1 innings pitched versus 103.0 innings pitched against righties. The math makes sense, though when one considers that Sabathia gives up a .259 batting average against right-handers and a .217 batting average against lefties. Overall innings pitched in 2016, Sabathia has posted a 4.20 ERA, but his monthly splits suggest a different trend. After a strong May and June, C.C. has posted a 5.93 ERA in July and 5.71 ERA in August. He’s just 2-5 in decisions in his last 10 starts and has given up multiple home runs in three out of his last four games

Although I would love to pile on J.A. Happ and Toronto in this game, the betting trends speak of a different angle. Toronto is a very strong 23-7 favoring the Under when facing left-handers, combined with an 18-36 O-U record on the road. The Yankee bullpen is also very good at home, should C.C. falter, and have compiled an excellent 2.49 ERA there on the year. The Under has cashed in 9 out of the last 13 games for Toronto as well. I trust that Happ will have a good performance here, but the Under seems to have the best value, which is why I am shopping around and taking Under 9 runs -115 at 5Dimes for my Wednesday MLB Pick.

2016 YTD MLB: 50-32-4, +16.39 Units
Free MLB Pick: Under 9 -115
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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