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MLB Best Bet: Keeping It Simple at the End of a Newsworthy Yankees-Blue Jays Series

by Jennifer Piacenti/SI.com May 18, 2023 at 6:06 a.m.

The Yankees and Blue Jays will play the last game of their four-game series at the Rogers Centre in Toronto Thursday night.

In case you havent been watching, there is no love lost between these two teams. On Monday, Blue Jays announcers implied Aaron Judge could be cheating, setting social media ablaze. Then on Tuesday, Domingo German was ejected from the game, accused of using an illegal substance. The Yankees won both of those games, with Aaron Judge even homering twice on Monday.

John E. Sokolowski/USA TODAY Sports

On Wednesday, the Jays came out strong and blanked the Yankees, 3-0.

So, whats in store for tonight?

The Jays are at home and will send Jose Berrios to the mound. Berrios has been better of late after a rough start to the season, and his ERA has settled at 4.70. HIs barrel-rate is only in the 37th percentile, and that could be trouble vs.the team with the reigning AL MVP. Judge has 10 homers off righthanded pitchers while teammate DJ LeMahieu is hitting .300 vs. righties.

Nestor Cortes gets the start for New York, and though his 5.53 ERA looks ugly, hes actually pitched better than it seems as his xERA is only 3.91. The major concern here is that Cortess hard-hit rate is only in the 32nd percentile, and Matt Chapman is crushing lefties, batting .500 with a 1.387 OPS.

Despite the fact that games at the Rogers Centre are averaging only 7.67 runs per game this year, the run total is set up at nine. I agree there should be plenty of runs scored in this game, but I am not betting on the run total today, Im betting on the Yankees as road dogs. For the season, these two teams are almost identical in runs scored per game but the Yankees have been the hotter team in the month of May with an average of 5.56 runs per game compared to the Jays 4.67. At +110, I will take that value.

Those who want to play it a little safer could take the Yankees on the run line. The Yankees are 5-1 ATS in their last six games when playing on the road vs. Toronto

The Pick: Yankees ML +110


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Print Headline: MLB Best Bet: Keeping It Simple at the End of a Newsworthy Yankees-Blue Jays Series

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