Two of the biggest rivals in Major League Baseball will square off on Thursday as the Boston Red Sox (72-76) take on the New York Yankees (90-58). New York will host this one at Yankee Stadium, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:15 pm ET.
These two have been going in very different directions this year. The Red Sox sit dead last in the AL East, 18 games behind the Yankees for first place. Also, sitting 9.5 games out of a Wild Card spot, there appears to be no postseason in Boston’s future this year.
For New York, they currently lead the division by six games over the Toronto Blue Jays. As the Astros have pulled away for the AL lead, it appears New York will likely get the second seed in the American League, meaning they will still get a bye through the Wild Card round.
The Yankees are the favorites Thursday playing at home. They are -178 to win, while the Red Sox moneyline sits at +150. The runline features Boston +1.5 (-134), and the over/under for total run is 8.5.
Boston Looking To Upset Yankees On The Road
While it has certainly been a frustrating year for Red Sox fans, there could be a speck of positivity if Boston could go into the Bronx and upset their longtime rivals on the road.
Looking to help take the first game of the series will be righty Michael Wacha. In 20 games this season, he is 11-1 with a 2.61 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, and he has 92 strikeouts in 114 innings of work.
In his last three starts combined, Wacha has allowed just six runs in 19 innings of work. Over that span, he has allowed 20 hits and has struck out 16.
Offensively, keep an eye on Boston’s third baseman Rafael Devers. In 11 career at bats versus the Yankees’ Jameson Taillon, he is hitting .364 with two home runs and six runs batted in.
J.D. Martinez (.308 avg, HR, 2 RBI) and Tommy Pham (.412 avg in 17 at bats, RBI) also have success against the righty in their careers.
Yankees Look To Stay Dominant At Home
While New York has been just average on the road this year (38-36), they have been absolutely dominant at Yankee Stadium, going 51-22 this season. On Thursday, they will look to add another tally to their home win column.
Manager Aaron Boone will hand the ball to 30-year-old righty Jameson Taillon Thursday. He is 13-5 in 29 games with a 4.04 ERA and 1.13 WHIP, and he has 132 strikeouts in 158 innings.
Taillon will try to bounce back from his last start when he gave up four runs in five innings in a loss to the Milwaukee Brewers.
Aaron Judge continues to have a historic season at the plate. In 533 at bats, he is hitting .317/.421/.705 with 60 home runs, 128 runs batted in, 125 runs scored, and 16 stolen bases. He leads MLB in home runs, RBIs, and runs scored.
Take New York To Win At Home
Even though these two are in completely different situations when it comes to postseason expectations, anytime the Red Sox and Yankees square off, it is almost always an instant classic.
Especially playing at home, the Yankees are tough to bet against, but it is worth noting that Michael Wacha has been really good this year, and if he can limit the damage by a potent Yankees offense, the Red Sox on the run line (-134) may not be an awful bet.
Still, the smart money is to take New York winning at home, where they have been absolutely electric all season.
Take New York to win at home at -178.