The Yankees and Marlins kick off a weekend series Friday night in Miami with both teams battling for a Wild Card spot. Jesús Luzardo takes the mound for Miami, while the Yankees are expected to recall Randy Vásquez from Triple-A to make tonight’s start.
The Marlins are the betting favorites tonight with -148 moneyline odds, while the over/under is set at 8.5 runs. The prediction here is that the Marlins and the under hits.
Yankees vs. Marlins Prediction
Starting pitchers: RHP Randy Vásquez (1-1, 1.17 ERA) vs. LHP Jesús Luzardo (8-6, 3.52 ERA)
The Yankees’ starting pitching rotation is somewhat in shambles. They are already without Domingo Germán, who was placed on the restricted list last week while he undergoes treatment for alcohol abuse. Then this week they lost Carlos Rodón, who would have been in line to start today but went back on the IL on Wednesday with a hamstring strain.
As a result, the Yankees are expected to recall 24-year-old Randy Vásquez from Triple-A to join the rotation for at least tonight’s game and possibly longer.
Randy Vasquez is likely to start tomorrow at Miami. https://t.co/cVLAPaGIFC
— Bryan Hoch ⚾️ (@BryanHoch) August 10, 2023
Vásquez is the Yankees’ No. 14 prospect and has looked impressive in his first three major league starts. Save for a Juan Soto 2-run blast in his debut, Vásquez has allowed nary a run and barely any hits over his first 15-1/3 innings. Of course, that is a very small sample size, and he has yet to see any extended action in the big leagues.
Vásquez is billed as a strikeout machine who boasts a 10.82 K/9 rate in Triple-A this season thanks largely to a nasty curveball. Miami will be a tough test for him, as they are one of the more disciplined teams at the plate with just a 21.4% strikeout rate this season (8th best in the league).
Opposing Vásquez for the Marlins is 25-year-old lefty Jesús Luzardo, who is enjoying a bit of a breakout season though he has had a couple of subpar outings in his last two starts. Luzardo has allowed 8 runs over 10 innings in those starts, including three home runs against the powerful bats of the Texas Rangers.
Prior to that, however, Luzardo was on a six-game stretch with a 1.23 ERA, a 0.90 WHIP and a 5-to-1 K/BB ratio. He has shown the ability to dominate opposing lineups. The Yankees get the good end of their splits against him, as they are hitting .241 with a .765 OPS against lefties compared to .229 and .697 against righties.
Despite a couple of poor outings recently, we like the chances that Luzardo bounces back with a good performance tonight. He inspires more confidence than Vásquez, though both starters appear poised for solid outings. We just need to see more from Vásquez before we can trust him.
As such, we’re backing the home team and taking the Marlins’ moneyline at -148 odds. We’re also trusting both starting pitchers and the respective bullpens enough to like the under on 8.5 runs at -115 odds.
Yankees vs. Marlins Prediction: Marlins moneyline (-148), under 8.5 runs (-115)
Yankees vs. Marlins Odds
The Marlins are the betting favorites with -148 moneyline odds, while the visiting Yankees’ moneyline is at +124.
The Marlins are laying -1.5 runs on the spread at +140 odds, while the Yankees are getting +1.5 runs at -166 odds.
The over/under for this game is set at 8.5 runs with -105 odds on the over and -115 on the under.
Yankees vs. Marlins Key Matchups
Here are the key matchups that could decide Yankees vs. Marlins.
Jesús Luzardo vs. (almost) All Righties
The track record of Jesús Luzardo over the course of the last two seasons is one of the main reasons for the Marlins moneyline pick in our Yankees vs. Marlins prediction above. For that to pay off, Luzardo needs to handle a Yankees lineup that consists of almost entirely right-handed hitters.
Of New York’s expected starters, only Jake Bauers bats from the left side. It’s no surprise that Yankees fare much better against lefties like Luzardo.
Luzardo is significantly better against lefties than he is against righties, who are hitting .255 with a .763 OPS against him this season compared to marks of .191 and .539 against lefties. Luzardo needs to outperform those splits tonight if he wants to avoid a third straight subpar outing, not to mention a Yankees win.
Randy Vásquez vs. inexperience
The biggest knock against Vásquez right now is his lack of experience, as he has looked excellent in his limited opportunities this season. He has every opportunity to put together another strong start against Miami, who do not have the most dangerous lineup.
Miami is just 26th in runs scored and 18th in wRC+ this season. While they added some pop to the lineup by acquiring Josh Bell and Jake Burger at the trade deadline, that has yet to translate to more offense. They are still just 25th in runs and 19th in wRC+ since August 1.
Vásquez also has the advantage of facing a lineup with only a few left-handed bats. Those lefties are some of the best hitters in the lineup, however, including the league leader in batting average, Luis Arraez (.369).
If Miami can muster enough offense against Vásquez, then the moneyline pick should be looking good.
Yankees vs. Marlins Starting Lineups (Projected)
Yankees Starting Lineup
2B Gleyber Torres (R)
RF Aaron Judge (R)
DH Giancarlo Stanton (R)
3B DJ LeMahieu (R)
1B Jake Bauers (L)
CF Harrison Bader (R)
LF Isiah Kiner-Falefa (R)
SS Anthony Volpe (R)
C Kyle Higashioka (R)
Marlins Starting Lineup
2B Luis Arraez (L)
RF Jorge Soler (R)
DH Josh Bell (S)
CF Jazz Chisholm (L)
LF Bryan De La Cruz (R)
3B Jake Burger (R)
1B Yuli Gurriel (R)
SS Jon Berti (R)
C Nick Fortes (R)