Yankees vs. Dodgers: Predictions, Odds, Best Bets, Starting Lineups (6/2/23)

For the first time since 2019, another chapter will be written in one of the great interleague rivalries in baseball. Just as they did four years ago, the Yankees will take a trip to the West Coast to take on the Dodgers, in what promises to be a deeply entertaining series. Let’s take a look at the odds for this Friday night clash, where my prediction is for the Bronx Bombers to hit their moneyline of +120.

Yankees Vs. Dodgers Prediction

When the Yankees came to LA for players’ weekend in August of 2019, it was an absolute blast. The visitors took 2 of 3 games and stars on both sides put on a show, most notably Aaron Judge who homered in each game- including one blast against Friday’s starter, the legendary Clayton Kershaw.

At that time, these clubs were pretty indisputably at the top of the league, with only the Astros really viewed as competition. Now, things are a bit different- the Dodgers are tied for first in the division with the upstart Diamondbacks, while the Yankees are stuck in the AL East behind the teams with the best and third best records in baseball.

Still, these teams are potentially hitting their stride at the right time, and have every ability to give us another classic series. The Yankees are getting healthy- Giancarlo Stanton, Josh Donaldson, and Tommy Kahnle are all returning for this series, and Friday’s starter, Luis Severino, has been a huge boost in two starts since coming off of the IL.

Speaking of Severino, he’s been a pretty solid home run prevention pitcher- he’s averaged just 1 allowed per 9 innings throughout his career. On the other side of the box score, you’ve got Kershaw, whose career mark of 0.7 HR/9 is the best amongst all active qualified starters.

This could be quite the recipe for a pitcher’s duel; these teams both live and die by the long ball. The Dodgers and Yanks are 21st and 22nd in the MLB in batting average, but 2nd and 4th in home runs. They can’t rely on those given the pitching matchup, so I’m taking the under.

For the moneyline, I’m taking the visitors- Severino has quietly been one of the best arms in the league over his career when healthy, and his struggles have usually been fatigue-related late in the season. I love his chances to throw a gem in his third start of the year, whereas I don’t love Kershaw quite as much considering the righty-heavy nature of the Yankees lineup.

Yankees Vs. Dodgers Prediction: Yankees ML (+120), u8.5 runs (-120)

Yankees Vs. Dodgers Odds

The Yankees are +120 underdogs compared to -141 for the Dodgers, while the over is even money for a run scoring line of 8.5, and the under is -120.

Yankees Vs. Dodgers Key Matchups

Will Clayton Kershaw have sustained success against the Yankees powerful righties? How will Luis Severino do against Mookie Betts and the top of the Dodgers lineup? Check out the key matchups that could decide Yankees vs Dodgers below.

Clayton Kershaw Vs. Power Righties

It goes almost without saying that Kershaw is one of the very best pitchers of all time, and doesn’t truly struggle with any group of hitters. But he does have a very defined platoon split for this season, and a smaller but still visible one across his career. With Anthony Rizzo’s status in question, the Yankees will be pretty much all righties, and even if he does play, Rizzo crushes southpaws more than any other left-handed bat in the game.

Obviously, the biggest righty threat in the Yankees lineup (and at this point, fairly unquestionably the biggest offensive threat in the league overall) is Aaron Judge. There’s little that can be said about Judge that I haven’t already said, but when he’s on, which he is right now, nobody in the modern history of the game has ever been better. His last matchup with Kershaw was a thriller, and it’s a real treat that we get to see these two all-time talents meet again.

Then there’s the pair of right-handed sluggers coming off of the IL- Giancarlo Stanton and Josh Donaldson. Neither has played the best MLB ball of their career lately, we are talking about two former MVPs here, but both looked good on their rehab assignments and are always contenders to tie into one.

It’s also worth noting that Rizzo actually has been putting together his best offensive campaign in awhile, including from a power standpoint, and would be a real boost if he’s able to play. With or without the veteran first baseman, this Yanks lineup has a handful of guys to put them over the top, which is a major reason I have them hitting their +120 moneyline in my Yankees vs. Dodgers prediction.

Luis Severino Vs. Top of the Lineup

Although he’s gotten off to a strong start across his first two appearances of the season, the Dodgers lineup, which is third in the league in OPS, will easily be Severino’s toughest test yet. Right at the top, there’s Mookie Betts, a former MVP in solid form.

Up next is possibly this year’s eventual MVP, Freddie Freeman, who just finished off a red-hot May and is amidst a 20-game hit streak. Betts’s former Boston teammate JD Martinez is also ripping the ball, he’s third on the team with an OPS of .931 and has his own hit streak of 15 games.

Between Freeman and Martinez in both the lineup and the team OPS list is the Fresh Prince himself, Will Smith, who is having an outstanding season. In this star-studded group, Max Muncy is the home run leader thus far with 17 bombs on the year.

To cap it all off, you have Jason Heyward in what is becoming a seriously resurgent campaign- other than the shortened 2020 season, he hasn’t had a better OPS since 2012. It’s a very talented group, and they’ll give Severino a challenge on Friday night- I just believe he’s up for it.

Frederick 20 game hit streak, JD Martinez 15

Yankees Vs. Dodgers Starting Lineups

Yankees Starting Lineup

2B G. Torres R
RF A. Judge R
1B D. LeMahieu R
DH G. Stanton R
3B J. Donaldson R
LF W. Calhoun L
SS A. Volpe R
CF I. Kiner-Falefa R
C K. Higashioka R

Dodgers Starting Lineup

RF M. Betts R
1B F. Freeman L
C W. Smith R
DH J. Martinez R
CF J. Heyward L
3B M. Muncy L
LF C. Taylor R
2B M. Vargas R
SS M. Rojas R

From starting my own blog in Middle School, to working on a friend’s in college, and finally joining the Lineups team this year, I’ve been writing about sports for over a decade and betting on them as long as I’ve been legally able. I graduated from the University of Michigan last year, where I took sports journalism classes alongside my business major. Having played and watched sports for almost my whole life, I aim to provide insight and entertainment, as well as profitable picks, in my writing about professional and collegiate leagues.

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