The baseball week comes to an end Sunday night as the New York Yankees close out a series with the rival Boston Red Sox. Despite losing the first two games of the series, the Red Sox are slight -120 favorites to win on Sunday.
The Yankees began June on Saturday with a win, and they’ll look to stay hot after an outstanding May. New York went 20-7 in May, losing just three games over the last three weeks. Despite a strong week from the Rays, the Yankees are still leading the AL East by 2.5 games.
Meanwhile, the Red Sox are mired in a four-game losing streak despite playing good baseball for most of May. Boston managed to put a poor April behind them and get back in the mix in May. However, their four-game losing streak has dropped them back to .500 and 9.5 games behind the Yankees, so they desperately need to salvage the series with a win on Sunday.
Price on the Rise
David Price will get the start for Boston on Sunday. After a solid April, Price cranked things up a notch in May. Despite leaving a start against Houston in the first inning last weekend due to illness, the lefty bounced back with six shutout innings against the Indians earlier this week. Since his brief stint on the IL with elbow tendinitis, Price has allowed just two runs, both unearned, on seven hits over 11.2 innings.
Of course, Price doesn’t have a great history against the Yankees. On Sunday, he’ll face a slightly watered-down lineup that’s still missing some big bats. However, the likes of Gleyber Torres, DJ LeMahieu, Gary Sanchez, and Luke Voit have all helped to make up for the absence of guys like Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton. Voit and Sanchez, specifically, have mashed against Price, combining to go 9 for 18 with seven home runs.
Guess Who’s Back?
CC Sabathia will come off the IL to make the start Sunday for the Yankees. The 38-year-old needed a little break to deal with a chronic knee problem, but he expects to pick up where he left off. In eight starts, Sabathia is 3-1 with a 3.48 ERA, providing a measure of consistency for the Yankees. He rarely goes beyond five innings at this point in his career, but he almost always keeps the Yankees in the game for those five innings.
Sabathia has actually fared well against most of Boston’s hitters in his career. He’ll catch a break with Steve Pearce currently on the IL. Mookie Betts is also someone to watch, as he’s hitting .429 in his career against Sabathia. Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr. are the two hottest hitters in Boston’s lineup right now. However, they are a combined 12 for 64 (.188) in their career against Sabathia.
Bust Out the Brooms
The Red Sox need this game more, but it’s hard to believe in them given Price’s past struggles against the Yankees. The Red Sox are also slumping while the Yankees have arguably been the best team in baseball over the last three weeks. Bet on the Yankees as underdogs to beat the Red Sox on Sunday.