MLB Picks: Blue Jays vs. Yankees

Jeff Grant

Friday, April 26, 2013 1:06 PM GMT

The Toronto Blue Jays have scored three runs or less in 14 of their 22 games this season, but the lineup might be sitting on a breakout performance against the New York Yankees Friday night.

Let’s take a closer look at the MLB betting odds for this American League East affair at Yankee Stadium, with the opening pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m. ET.

Inability to get going 

Toronto failed to win back-to-back games for the first time since April 12-13, as it suffered a 5-3 series-opening loss to the New York Yankees as +123 road underdogs Thursday night, while pushing up against the betting total of 8. 

The Blue Jays are going to have a hard time building momentum in the final three contests of this series, considering they’ve dropped 13 of their last 15 games at this venue.

Also take a look at my free picks for the matchup between the Angels & Mariners.

Exceeding expectations 

Due to numerous injuries, New York wasn’t expected to do much by MLB handicappers when wagering on the MLB futures market, but the club sits in third place in the AL East division—just 2.5 games back of the Boston Red Sox.

The Yankees have won 11 of their last 16 games, with second baseman Robinson Cano leading the way offensively, as he’s batting .391 with 17 RBIs over that span. 

Johnson 

Blue Jays starting pitcher Josh Johnson (0-1, 6.86 ERA) finally led the club to a victory in his fourth start, as he failed to earn a decision in a 8-4 victory over the Yankees last time out, allowing four runs and eight hits over 5.1 innings of work. 

The right-hander was knocked around in a big way in his only road effort, surrendering six runs and seven hits in recording just four outs in a 11-1 setback to the Detroit Tigers. 

Nova 

Yankees starting pitcher Ivan Nova (1-1, 6.14 ERA) has watched the squad alternate wins and losses over his three outings, as he didn’t factor into the decision against Johnson at the Rogers Center five days ago, giving up four runs and seven hits over five frames. 

The right-hander is 3-2 with a 4.39 ERA in eight career games (seven starts) versus the Blue Jays, including a 2-0 mark and 3.50 ERA in three outings at this ballpark.

[gameodds]3/225628/43/us[/gameodds]

Prediction 

I’m going to recommend that readers play the total as one of their MLB picks Friday night, as the OVER is 3-1-1 in the last five meetings in this series, while umpire Chad Fairchild has seen an average of 11.67 runs in his three games behind home plate this season. 

MLB Pick:  Over 9 at Pinnacle