The New York Yankees and the Detroit Tigers will begin a three-game set in the Bronx on Friday night.
New York, the winningest team in baseball, has been firing on all cylinders as of late. The Bombers completed a three-game sweep of the Los Angeles Angels and are heavy favorites against a Tiger team that is trending in the right direction.
The Tigers have won five of their last six games against the Minnesota Twins and the Cleveland Guardians, but they will face an extremely difficult test in the Yankees this weekend.
Gerrit Cole will take the mound tonight against the young Elvin Rodriguez, who is making just his fourth start of the season.
Let’s take a look at the angles for tonight’s game on Apple TV+.
Cole Should Shut Down the Tiger’s Offense
Cole got roughed up by the Tigers in Detroit in April and did not make it out of the first inning. I expect a motivated Cole to have a vintage bounce-back performance tonight and ride the upward momentum of the rest of the Yankee pitching staff.
The Tigers are the worst offensive team in the league. They are 29th in runs scored and 30th in slugging percentage. Javier Báez and Jeimer Candaliero’s impatience at the plate has been crippling for Detroit. Baez’s 48.4 chase rate and 47 percent whiff rate are near the bottom of the league.
Cole should feast against the swing-happy Tiger lineup, make his way to double-digit strikeouts, and earn his seventh career win against Detroit.
The Bombers are Back
The Yankees are hitting the lights out of the baseball. Although big-time power bat Giancarlo Stanton and Josh Donaldson are on the injured list, New York is still producing a lot of runs.
They are averaging 4.67 runs per game, lead the league in home runs, and are first in the AL in slugging percentage. Star outfielder Aaron Judge is having an MVP campaign and second baseman Gleyber Torres is recapturing his power from 2018 and 2019.
Rodriguez has faced the White Sox, Twins, and Guardians this season, giving up eight total runs in three starts. It is hard to pitch under the bright lights in the Bronx. The red-hot Yankee offense will welcome the sight of Rodriguez on the mound.
Take the Yankees on the Run Line
The Yankees are -345 on the moneyline, so there really is no value at that number. A heavy favorite parlay with the Yankees -1.5 and the Blue Jays -1.5, who are facing the falling Twins at home, brings you down to +223.
Cole should respond from his April letdown in Detroit with a positive outing, and the Yankees offense should provide ample run support facing Rodriguez. I would also consider looking at the over of 7.5 if you expect the Yankees to score at will and the Yankees bullpen to give up a few runs after Cole exits.
Pick: Yankees -1.5 (-150); Yankees -1.5/Blue Jays -1.5 parlay (+223).