MLB Picks: With Sabathia Rolling Bet Yankees & 'Under' vs. Rockies

Matthew Jordan

Wednesday, June 22, 2016 11:48 AM GMT

It feels weird previewing a Rockies-Yankees game at Yankee Stadium because this is only the third series in Colorado history. The Yanks are -161 on the MLB odds with a total of 9.

What You Need To Know
Because this is an interleague game in the American League park, the Rockies will add the designated hitter. Remains to be seen who that might be. One guy it won't be is Gerardo Parra as he's on the 15-day disabled list with an ankle injury. He was hitting .263 with five homers, 27 RBIs and six steals. Ryan Raburn has generally been playing left field with Parra out.

Both the Rockies and Yankees are really in the same boat. Both are hovering near .500 and would like to keep their fans' attention all summer -- at least until the NFL season starts, especially in  Denver. But both seem likely to be sellers ahead of the Aug. 1 trade deadline because they aren't making the playoffs. Any contender would take Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez if the team lowers its asking price on him.


 

The Yankees are more interesting because they are never sellers ahead of the deadline. They don't know what it's like to tank. But this aged roster badly needs some infusion of young talent. First baseman Mark Teixeira could be had for a song, but he has to come off the DL first and show he can still hit. He should be activated Saturday. Tex is batting just .180 with three homers in 167 at-bats. I do believe the team could deal outfielder/DH Carlos Beltran since he will be a free agent after the season like Teixeira. Beltran is 39 but leads the team in hitting, homers and RBIs. He's probably more suited to be a DH at his age, but you hear some NL contenders (like the Giants) are still looking at him.  Beltran also has been one of the best postseason hitters of his era. As of now, however, Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner says his team isn't going to be a seller: “I believe we’re going to be right smack in the middle of it by the end of July,” he said Monday. I disagree.

 

Probable Pitchers
The Rockies start their top pitching prospect, right-hander Jon Gray. The 24-year-old was the No. 3 overall pick in the 2013 amateur draft, taken one spot after the Cubs grabbed Kris Bryant, who won the 2015 NL Rookie of the Year Award. Gray hasn't really lived up to the billing yet, having made 20 big-league starts. But he's showing some signs. Last time out, Gray (4-3, 4.55) had his fifth straight  quality start, allowing two runs and six hits over six innings in a loss at the Marlins. Gray hasn't allowed more than two earned in any game of that five-start streak. He has never faced the Yankees. The Rockies are never going to get a top free-agent pitcher to come to Denver so they have to hit on draft picks like Gray. They are 2-8 on MLB odds in Gray's past 10 road starts.

The Yankees start big lefty CC Sabathia, who looks like a completely different -- i.e. much better -- guy this year. Sabathia (5-4, 2.20) is among the AL ERA leaders and has the lowest ERA in baseball at 0.82 since the start of May. Last time out, he beat the Twins, allowing one run and six hits over six innings. Sabathia has allowed a total of four earned runs in his past seven starts. Remember, this guy was 6-10 with a 4.73 ERA last year and wasn't on the playoff roster because he was in alcohol rehab. The Yankees are 14-5 on MLB picks in Sabathia's past 19 interleague starts.

A handful of Rockies have faced Sabathia in a regular-season game. Raburn has the most, going 5-for-27 with two doubles, three RBIs and nine strikeouts. Mark Reynolds is 3-for-16 with a double, homer and three RBIs. Gonzalez is 0-for-3. Rockies star third baseman Nolan Arenado is 0-for-1 against Sabathia.

 

Final Analysis
Love the 'under' with both pitchers going well right now and it being an afternoon game after a night one. That helps pitchers. Go Yankees at home. New York is 5-1 in Sabathia's past six pitching on five days of rest. The 'under' is 5-2 in the Rockies' past seven against a lefty. The 'under' is 8-0-1 in Sabathia's past nine at home vs. a team with a losing record.

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MLB Picks: Yankees -160 & 9 -125
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline