The New York Yankees answered the bell and won Game 4 of their AL Division Series against Cleveland on Sunday, forcing a Game 5.
Oddsmakers at BetMGM have the Yankees at -175 to win the deciding Game 5, which will be played in the Bronx this afternoon following a rain postponement on Monday. The Guardians best price is +152 from FanDuel.
Once the favorite in the AL to win the pennant and World Series, the Yankees are now listed at +250 to win the pennant and +500 to win the World Series, by DraftKings and FanDuel. The Yankees stumbled to the finish line of the regular season, and now face a winner-take-all game against the pesky Guardians, who captured Game 4 with a three-run, ninth inning rally on Saturday.
The Guardians, who won the AL Central, are the longest shot to win the World Series according to Caesars and FanDuel, at +1300. You could have found odds as high as +2500 on Cleveland after they lost Game of this series. The Cleveland franchise has not won the World Series since 1948. The Yankees last won the title in 2009.
The winner of Game 5 on Tuesday will face the Houston Astros in the AL Championship Series, which begins Wednesday.
Guardians vs. Yankees, Game 5 ALDS
We have odds for the Yankees/Guardians Game 5 ALDS matchup scheduled for Tuesday afternoon:
Guardians vs. Yankees Pitching Matchup, Game 5 ALDS
Aaron Civale (5-6, 4.92 ERA in regular season) vs. Nestor Cortes (0-0, 3.60 ERA in the postseason)
Yankees manager Aaron Boone has announced that his starter for Game 5 will be Nestor Cortes, a 12-game winner in the regular season. Cortes is being summoned on short rest. He started Game 2 on Friday and pitched five innings, allowing two earned runs.
Cortes has started on three days rest only once in his MLB career, and the results were problematic: four runs (two earned) in only 2 1/3 innings, with seven of the 13 batters he faced reaching base. The weight of the Yankees season and expectations of their fanbase will be on Nasty Nestor, and his nasty record on three days rest is worrisome.
Boone showed on Sunday that he could navigate the last few innings with his best relief options: Clay Holmes and Wandy Peralta. On Tuesday he’ll likely have to rely on several bullpen arms, and if Cortes does not prove to be up to the task, this could become an unwanted bullpen game fast.
Civale will be pitching for the first time in 13 days when he toes the rubber for the Guardians for Game 5. In a pair of starts against the Yankees this season, he has a 10.00 ERA in nine innings, having allowed 12 hits and three walks. He surrendered two homers to Anthony Rizzo this season, and one to Giancarlo Stanton. As happens in a Game 5, Civale’s leash will be short and taut.
New York Yankees’ Aaron Judge, left, and Josh Donaldson celebrate after the Yankees defeated the Cleveland Guardians in Game 4 of a baseball AL Division Series, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/David Dermer)
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Yankees, Guardians ALDS Game 5 Pick
It’s been a while since we’ve seen an MLB Playoff winner-take-all game where both teams were rolling out such untested, and potentially rusty pitchers. Aces we are not getting for Tuesday’s matchup.
Boone’s decision to forego Jameson Taillon and hand the baseball to Cortes on short rest is risky, especially in today’s game where starters are not trained to manage their effort and pitch to situations in order to maximize performance.
But, if we’ve learned anything this postseason, it’s that pitchers are ahead of hitters. With spin rates and darting sliders and other breaking pitches, hurlers have the upper hand in this sport. That leads to strikeouts, bad contact, and just plain boring, no-scoring or low-scoring games. We’ve seen two games in these playoffs go at least 14 innings without either team scoring.
The pitching staffs probably have enough gas in the tank to dominate the hitters in Game 5, and that means one well-placed rally, string of 2-3 hits, or a booming swing of the bat might decide this series. We give the edge to the Yankees because of their power, and being the home team. Look for Rizzo to be a key bat for the Bombers, and for baserunning to be a factor, like it has already in this series.
GAME 5 PICK:
Bet the Over 7 runs (+100 from Caesars). We expect the Yankees to hit the baseball over the fence enough to win this game, but neither of these starters is going to be around to pitch very deep. The bullpens will decide who gets to face the Astros in the ALCS.
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