Royals vs. Yankees Pick
According to oddsmakers at Bovada.lv, the Yankees are a -175 favorite to win on the moneyline. The Royals are a +150 underdog and the over-under is 9.
Kansas City will turn to Jake Junis (8-2, 4.05 ERA) on the mound, while New York will go with CC Sabathia (12-5, 3.81). Junis has a 1.28 WHIP with 71 strikeouts over 86 2/3 innings. He allowed four runs (two earned) on three hits with three strikeouts and two walks over 6 1/3 innings in a 15-5 win at the Blue Jays his last start. Junis carries a 4.50 ERA in 48 road innings. Sabathia holds a 1.30 ERA with 110 strikeouts over 137 innings. He gave up two earned runs on six hits with five strikeouts and one walk over six innings in a 5-2 home win over the Twins his last start. Sabathia has a 4.55 ERA in 63 1/3 home innings.
The Royals have a 76-79 record and are 37-43 on the road, while the Yankees come in at 86-69 and 46-28 at home. New York leads the season series 4-2 and five of the games have gone under the total including the last four.
Over the weekend, Kansas City lost two out of three games at the White Sox with Sunday's finale being an 8-1 defeat. Ian Kennedy suffered the defeat as he allowed five earned runs and struck out seven over 5 1/3 innings. Lorenzo Cain provided the lone Royals run with a solo home run. New York lost two out of three at the Blue Jays including a 9-5 defeat Sunday. Aaron Judge was 2-for-4 with two home runs plus a walk and three RBIs, drawing within one home run of the rookie single-season home run record. Chase Headley finished 1-for-4 with two runs. Starlin Castro ended the afternoon 2-for-4. Jaime Garcia gave up five earned runs over 2 1/3 innings to take the loss.
The Yankees are basically locked into hosting the AL Wild Card game, so they are really only playing out the string of regular season games while tuning up for the playoffs and getting the pitching staff in order. Junis has quietly put together a strong rookie campaign and has the ability to slow down some of the Yankees' power bats. While the Royals offense is subpar, they get a ballpark boost playing in the Bronx. And while Sabathia has had a strong season overall, he isn't exactly a shutdown pitcher. We like the Royals to win a close game here.
MLB DAILY PREDICTION: KANSAS CITY ROYALS +150