After Monday’s matchup was canceled due to weather conditions, it’s been moved to Tuesday as the first half of a late-season doubleheader at legendary Fenway Park. The New York Yankees will be the visitors, as they take on the Boston Red Sox in another installment of baseball’s greatest rivalry. Let’s check out the odds for this American League East clash, where my prediction is a Red Sox win to secure their -130 moneyline.
Yankees Vs. Red Sox Prediction
Things have gone from bad to worse as the New York Yankees limp towards the end of their worst season in quite some time. After a short spurt of competence, including a sweep of the Astros in Houston, they’re back below .500; if they finish the season that way, it’ll be the first time they’ve done so since 1992, well before the last major era of World Series success in the Bronx.
To add injury to insult, so to speak, superstar prospect Jasson Dominguez is out for the rest of the year and perhaps a while longer after tearing his UCL. The elbow injury isn’t usually as devastating for position players as it is for pitchers, but still requires surgery, and takes away the brightest spot of this end stage of a lost season, as Dominguez had been hitting at a historic rate upon arriving in the big leagues.
Things haven’t been quite as bad for the Red Sox, due in large part to their dominance in the head to head season series to this point, as they’ve amassed a 8-1 record against their greatest rivals. The Sox are three games above .500, and after losing consecutive series to AL East opponents Tampa Bay and Baltimore, their playoff aspirations are effectively a thing of the past.
The Yankees will be throwing rookie right hander Randy Vásquez, who has appeared in 7 games this season, four of which have been starts. He’s done well in general, but his outings in the majors have been relatively few and far between, with his most recent start having been in mid-August, although he chipped in a solid 2.1-inning relief performance less than a week ago.
He’ll be squaring off with a more experienced arm, Nick Pivetta, who is wrapping up his third full season in Boston. He’s been stunningly consistent over those three campaigns, with an ERA between 4.53 and 4.56 in each, including the mark he’s earned to date this year. Over those first couple of seasons, he was used almost exclusively as a starter, although this year, only 12 of his 34 outings have been starts, the most recent of which was a shaky outing against the Rays about a week ago.
Despite Pivetta’s iffy track record, Vásquez has essentially none; it’s hard to bet on him in this game, especially when the Yankees could push him farther than he’s comfortable, as they might be looking to preserve the bullpen for the second leg of the doubleheader. I’ll take Boston on the moneyline, while this game has “over” written all over it with two questionable starters who could easily be in the game way past their comfort zone.
Yankees Vs. Red Sox Prediction: Red Sox ML (-130), over 9.5 runs (-115)
Yankees Vs. Red Sox Odds
The Red Sox are -130 home favorites, compared to +110 for the Yankees. For a run total of 9.5, the over is set at -115 while the under is -105.
Yankees Vs. Red Sox Key Matchups
Randy Vásquez vs. True Outcome Hitters
Across a small sample size of MLB outings, Vásquez has had some issues with home runs and walks, two of baseball’s “true outcomes.” Luckily for the 24 year old righty, the Red Sox are 24th in the league in walks, and a league-average 15th in home runs. Still, there are definitely some threats up and down the lineup, so let’s take a look at a couple.
Unshockingly, slugging third baseman Rafael Devers leads the team with 29 home runs, and he continues to haunt the nightmares of the Bronx Bombers as the latest “Yankee Killer” in the rivalry’s rich history. Triston Casas has smacked 24 homers of his own, and leads the team by a decent margin with 67 walks; Devers is up next with an even 50. Veteran Justin Turner has been solid in both regards with 23 homers and 47 walks, rounding out the top three in each category, and a group of hitters with OPS totals of .835 or better. These bats and others will prove challenging for Vásquez, one reason I have the Red Sox winning in my Yankees vs. Red Sox prediction.
Nick Pivetta vs. Power Hitters
Pivetta has also struggled to keep the ball in the park, with an eye-popping 1.7 home runs allowed per 9 innings of work. That’s a bad weakness to have against the Yankees, who have plenty of flaws as an offense but sit fifth in the league with 203 home runs.
Despite missing over 50 games, the incomparable Aaron Judge is the team’s home run leader with 31 in just 310 at bats, good enough for fourth in the American League. Up next is Gleyber Torres who has hit 25 homers in a quietly solid season, while Giancarlo Stanton has hit 23 home runs this year, including the 400th of his career as he has bounced back a bit lately. Rookie Anthony Volpe has hit an impressive 20, while DJ LeMahieu is up to 15 as he rediscovers his power stroke.
Yankees Vs. Red Sox Starting Lineups
Yankees Starting Lineup
1B D. LeMahieu R
RF A. Judge R
2B G. Torres R
DH G. Stanton R
CF I. Kiner-Falefa R
SS A. Volpe R
C A. Wells L
LF E. Pereira R
3B O. Peraza R
Red Sox Starting Lineup
RF A. Verdugo L
3B R. Devers L
DH J. Turner
1B T. Casas L
LF M. Yoshida L
SS T. Story R
CF W. Abreu L
2B E. Valdez L
C R. McGuire L