Yankees vs. Red Sox: MLB Betting Picks for Thursday July 15th (2021)

Jul 15, 2021 - 5:39 PM

Major League Baseball’s second half resumes with a standalone game between the sport’s biggest rivals in the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees. The Red Sox are 6-0 against the Yankees this year, which is a big reason why they are separated by eight games in the standings. The Yankees play eight games against the Red Sox before the July 31st trade deadline, and how they fare in those games will go a long way in determining how General Manager Brian Cashman and the rest of New York’s front office approaches their plans to either buy or sell. Thus, there is a lot riding on these games, and should make for great theater especially tonight as the only game on the slate.

Here is my best bet for Thursday. (Odds courtesy DraftKings Sportsbook)

View the best player prop bets for today’s slate with our MLB Prop Bet Cheat Sheet >>

YTD: 109-94-4 (+2.35 units)

New York Yankees ML (-115)

The Yankees suffered one of the most painful losses in recent memory on Sunday heading into the All-Star break. With a 7-2 lead heading into the ninth inning and a chance to sweep their three-game series against the Houston Astros, New York’s bullpen imploded in the ninth inning. A combination of Domingo German and Chad Green allowed six runs while only recording one out, and Houston capped an 8-7 comeback win with Jose Altuve’s walkoff three-run home run. While that loss will not be one that the Yankees will soon forget, it is an easier pill to swallow having had three days off to recharge the batteries.

Boston’s Eduardo Rodriguez (6-5, 5.52) has pitched on the road in four of his last five starts. He is 3-4 with a 5.70 ERA in 12 road starts this year, and has just one win in his last 11 starts overall. The one win in that span came against the Yankees, and he has allowed five earned runs in 11.1 innings against them this year. Rodriguez is 7-6 with a 3.88 ERA in 20 career appearances (18 starts) against New York, but is just 2-4 with a 4.06 ERA in ten career starts at Yankee Stadium.

The Yankees counter with Domingo German (4-5, 4.44), who is 2-2 with a 4.72 ERA in eight appearances (seven starts) against Boston. He has allowed four earned runs in 9.2 combined innings against them this year. Though he has punched out just six Red Sox in that span, he has kept them in the yard, allowing just one home run. Manager Aaron Boone will likely only require five innings out of German before turning it over to a bullpen that ranks ninth in ERA but is best in the majors with a WAR of 4.5.

One of the biggest reasons I am backing the Yankees tonight is how much more fresh their roster should be than Boston’s. Aaron Judge was New York’s only position player to play in the All-Star Game, while Boston’s five representatives (J.D. Martinez, Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers, Matt Barnes, Nathan Eovaldi) combined for seven at-bats and two innings pitched in Tuesday’s game. Thus, while Boston’s three biggest bats did not receive much rest over the last couple of days given their commitments to the All-Star Game, most of New York’s roster was benefiting from a relaxing break.

The Yankees are 6-2 in their last eight games against a left-handed starter, and should now have the edge over Rodriguez who they have seen twice since June 5th. Though they have struggled against Boston this year, they are still 23-9 in their last 32 home games against Boston, and will play with a sense of urgency to start the second half off on the right foot.

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Mike Spector is a featured writer at BettingPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive and follow him @MikeSpector01.

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