The Yankees & Orioles are headed in different directions, but perception can play heavy on MLB betting lines. This handicapper believes that might be the case in this matchup.
Orioles-Yankees Monday Odds
In the early MLB betting odds market the best line we could find on New York with Michael Pineda was the -152 at BetOnline, while Baltimore and Wei-Yin Chen were getting +148 at 5Dimes. The Yanks could also be gotten at +145 giving the run and a half on the run line at 5Dimes.
New York just took two of three games at home from Tampa Bay over the weekend, rallying against Rays ace Chris Archer to win Sunday's rubber match 6-4. So the Yankees have won three series in a row and seven of their last nine games.
At 76-59 New York trails division-leading Toronto by a game and a half in the AL East, but leads the AL wild-card race by five games over second-place Texas.
Baltimore, meanwhile, just dropped two of three games to the Jays up in Toronto over the weekend, losing Sunday's rubber match 10-4. So the Orioles have lost five series in a row, and 14 of their last 17 games.
At 65-71 Baltimore, the defending AL East champion, has fallen to 6.5 games behind the Rangers in that battle for the second American League wild-card slot.
The Yanks lead this season series eight games to five, with the OVERS going 6-5-2.
Monday's Mound Match-Up
Pineda (10-8, 4.07), by our strict standards, is 11-for-21 on quality starts this season, but only one for his last four. Last Monday he held Boston to one run through six innings, with seven strikeouts, but over his three starts previous to that, separated by a month on the DL, he gave up 14 runs through 16 innings, which had us a bit concerned. For the season Pineda has allowed 139 hits through 128 innings, walked just 16 and struck out 127 for a crazy K/BB ratio of 8/1.
New York in 12-9 in Pineda's starts, with the OVERS going 11-8.
Pineda has started three times already this season against Baltimore, allowing 11 earned runs through 17 2/3 innings; the Yankees managed to win two of those games, with two of those games playing OVER.
Chen (8-7, 3.36) is 15-for-26 on quality starts, but 0 for his last two. Last Monday he gave up five runs in less than five innings against the Rays, and just before that he gave up three runs and 10 hits through 6 2/3 innings against Kansas City. On the season Chen has allowed 162 hits, including 26 homers, through 161 innings, walked 35 and struck out 129.
The O's are 16-10 in Chen's starts, with the totals skewing UNDER by a 16-8 margin.
In three starts against the Yanks this season Chen has allowed six runs through 19 1/3 innings; Baltimore only managed to win one of those games, while only one of those games played OVER.
Monday's Batting Splits
Baltimore ranks 22nd in the Majors this season against right-handed pitching with a .309 team on-base percentage, but third with a .433 team slugging percentage.
New York ranks 15th against righties with a .319 team OBP and fourth with a .426 team slugging percentage.
So this comparison of the bats is closer than we initially realized.
Ballpark Totals Factor
The OVERS are 32-30 in games played at Yankee Stadium this season, which are averaging 9.1 runs per.
New York is playing without slugger Mark Teixeira (31 HR), who's on the DL with a shin injury. But the Yanks are 7-2 since he went down, averaging almost eight runs per game.
O's-Yanks Free Picks
New York is fighting for a playoff berth, while Baltimore has fallen by the wayside, but our key handicapping factors – the pitching match-up, the batting splits and the bullpens – indicate today's line leans a bit too far toward the Yankees. We're not big on backing struggling teams with our MLB picks, but the betting value in this spot resides with the Orioles. Also, we could see this game getting to 4-4, so we're thinking OVER.