New York Yankees at Tampa Bay Rays Odds, Picks and Predictions

The New York Yankees took the first game of the series from the Tampa Bay Rays on Monday in a 4-2 pitcher’s duel. It wasn’t until Clay Holmes gave up his first run since Opening Day that the Rays tied the game. But Aaron Hicks delivered the game-winning hit in the top of the ninth.

The Yankees reached 50 wins in 67 games and have a 12 games lead in the AL East. The Rays (36-31) slipped to fourth in the division yet would secure the final wild-card spot if the season ended today.

“Nasty” Nestor Cortes Jr. gets the ball for the Yankees. He’s been dominant for baseball’s best pitching staff, going 6-2 with a 1.94 ERA and 75 strikeouts in 69.2 innings pitched. That includes winning both starts against the Rays this season, allowing two earned runs, and surrendering seven hits in 13.1 innings pitched. 

Southpaw Jalen Beeks will start, likely as an opener, for the Rays. He’s 1-1 with a 1.29 ERA and 33 strikeouts in 28 innings.

His most innings in an outing this season are 2.1 when he allowed one hit and walked one, striking out three against the Yankees. It was a 2-0 loss on May 27.

New York Yankees vs Tampa Bay Rays Match Info

Location: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Florida

Date: Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Time: 7:10 p.m. ET

TV: YES, Bally Sports Sun

New York Yankees vs Tampa Bay Rays Odds

Odds are listed in moneyline, run line and over/under order:

  • BetOnline – Yankees -166, Rays +153; Yankees -1.5 (-105), Rays +1.5 (-115); 7
  • Bovada – Yankees -175, Rays +144; Yankees -1.5 (+105), Rays +1.5 (-125); 7
  • MyBookie – Yankees -170, Rays +145; Yankees -1.5 (-105), Rays +1.5 (-115); 7
  • BetUS – Yankees -170, Rays +150; Yankees -1.5 (+100), Rays +1.5 (-120); 7
  • BetNow – Yankees -165, Rays +155; Yankees -1.5 (-105), Rays +1.5 (-115); 7

BetNow opened with the best moneyline odds on the Yankees and Rays. A $100 bet on the Rays nets a $155 profit while it would take $165 to profit $100 with a Yankees win. The best run line odds for the Yankees is at Bovada with the +105.

For the Rays, it is split between BetOnline and BetNow at -115. The over/under is even across the board, though the odds for over or under 

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New York Yankees vs Tampa Bay Rays Betting Trends

The Yankees have won four straight and seven of the last nine in the series. The under is 7-2 in those nine games as well. The over hit in both of the two Cortes starts this season, too.

For the season, the Yankees are 30-36-1 on over/unders and 21-10 on the road. The Rays are 28-35-4 on over/unders and 21-14 at the Trop.

Yankees keep getting production

The Yankees are clearly the best team in baseball, both on offense and pitching. Every bat in the lineup is lethal, which forces opposing pitching to commit to every pitch and may force more mistakes because they have to be perfect.

The Yankees are the tops offensively in runs per game (5.12), OPS (.770), and home runs per game (1.65). Most Valuable Player front-runner Aaron Judge is hitting .301 with 25 home runs, 50 RBIs, and 55 runs scored all team highs.

Anthony Rizzo has 19 home runs, 49 RBIs, and 42 runs scored after hitting another on Monday. Gleyber Torres has resurrected his career and has 13 doubles and 13 home runs with 31 runs scored and 32 RBIs.

But to be the first to 50 wins, the Yankees needed their pitching to take a step forward, and it has. They are tops in runs allowed per game (2.96), opposing batting average (.211), and opposing OPS (.606).

The rotation has been strong but so has the backend of the bullpen, even with Aroldis Chapman on the Injured List. Holmes is a big reason why allowing two earned runs in 32.2 innings while sporting a 4-0 record and 11 saves in 12 opportunities.

Michael King has locked down hitters of late with a 2.41 ERA and a 4-1 record. Wandy Peralta got his first save Monday but is 2-1 with a 2.42 ERA.

Tampa Bay’s offense struggles

Tampa Bay has been consistently successful because of their pitching philosophies, and that is the same reason for their success this season.

The offense, meanwhile, has struggled, and Monday night, the Rays said Manuel Margot and Kevin Kiermaier are becoming the 14th and 15th players with injury designations. That includes Mike Zunino, Brandon Lowe, and Wander Franco.

So there is a reason for the offense, and the pitching, to suffer. It’s remarkable they are above .500 with an offensive unit that is 25th in runs per game (4.05), batting average (.231), and 27th in OPS (.663). They also strike out 8.72 times per game, ranking 22nd.

Randy Arozarena is still in the lineup and is hitting .249 while leading the team in doubles (14), home runs (7, tied with Kiermaier), runs scored (30), and stolen bases (12).

Margot led the team with a .302 average. Ji-Man Choi has 12 doubles and six home runs, leading the team with 34 RBIs. It’s otherwise been a struggle for most of the lineup.

The pitching, though, is fifth across the board in runs allowed per game (3.83), opposing batting average (.222), and opposing OPS (.647). J.P. Feyereisen has been the top reliever allowing one unearned run in 24.1 innings pitched and striking out 25.

He is the high leverage guy and occasional opener, sporting a 4-0 record and is 1 for 2 in save opportunities. Colin Poche saved his fourth game of the season late last week and has a 1.27 ERA across 21.1 innings.

If the Rays can have a lead late in the game, they’ll give themselves an opportunity to shut the door, though it didn’t work out after tying the game Monday.

New York Yankees vs Tampa Bay Rays Picks and Predictions

  • The opener strategy typically works for the Rays, and they got great pitching in the first game of this week’s series. But the Yankees are still favored because they’ve been the best team in baseball. It may be worth a look at a Rays upset.
  • The over/under is set at 7. That equals last night’s total, and Cortes is only one start removed from allowing four earned runs. The real kicker here is how the Yankees’ offense performs because Tampa Bay’s starting nine is a shell of what it should be.
  • Losing Margot and Kiermaier hurts both offensively and defensively for the Rays. While they’re solid about matching up with lineups, it’s possible the Rays could get shutout because of their injuries. We like the Yankees to win outright and cover -1.5.

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