June 23, 2012
Interleague play wraps up on Sunday night with a terrific pitching matchup in the Subway Series finale in Flushing. R.A. Dickey is quickly turning into a Cy Young front-runner in the National League with a 11-1 record and ERA of 2.00, as the veteran knuckleballer is spearheading this Mets' rotation. The Mets weren't expected to do much this season in the competitive NL East, but Dickey has turned not only into a reliable pitcher for New York, but also for bettors.
Dickey won just eight games last season in 32 starts, while bouncing back this season with 11 victories in 14 outings. It's been hard to find a pitcher as dominating as Dickey, who hasn't allowed an earned run in his last five starts, as the former University of Tennessee standout is coming off consecutive complete game one-hitters. Each of those gems came against AL East clubs, beating the Rays as a road underdog and the Orioles as a home favorite.
The Yankees send out a Cy Young winner in CC Sabathia (9-3, 3.55 ERA), who has tossed six consecutive starts of at least seven innings. Sabathia is fresh off back-to-back wins over the Braves, including a complete game victory over Atlanta in the Bronx as a $2.00 favorite. The ERA and WHIP blows up on the highway for Sabathia, as the road ERA sits at 4.58 (compared to 2.33 at home) and the away WHIP is 1.44 (compared to 0.99 at home).
This is only the fifth career start against the Mets for Sabathia, with the last three coming as a member of the Yankees. Sabathia is seeing the Mets for the first time since 2010, as the southpaw split a pair of meetings against Johan Santana with the home team winning each time. In fact, since Sabathia lost at Citi Field on May 23, 2010, the Yankees own a spectacular 8-1 mark in his previous nine interleague starts (3-0 on the road).
The Mets are cashing 'unders' at a solid pace when Dickey takes the mound at pitcher-friendly Citi Field by going 6-1 to the 'under' in seven home starts. The last three home outings were shutouts by the Mets, while Dickey is listed as a home favorite for just the fifth time in eight outings. The Mets beat the Yankees twice last season when Dickey started, including a 2-1 victory in the Bronx as $1.85 underdog.
This series has been owned by the home team, who is 4-1 this season, including a close-shave victory by the Mets on Friday. The Mets scored five runs in the first inning off Andy Pettitte, while holding off a Yankees' rally in a 6-4 triumph. The Bronx Bombers grabbed the first three matchups earlier this month, including a walk-off win in the series finale. However, the Yankees rallied from a 3-0 deficit in last night's 4-3 victory as road favorites to improve to 4-1 against the Mets this season.
The Yankees are listed as $1.20 away favorites, while the total is set at 6 ½, shaded to the 'over' at $1.20. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN, starting at 8:00 PM EST from Citi Field.
The Rangers dominated the National League in the regular season once again, even though Texas can't figure it out in the World Series. Ron Washington's team won five of six games against cross-state rival Houston, while knocking off weak sisters San Diego and Colorado convincingly. Texas begins post interleague play against Detroit on Monday in a rematch of last October's ALCS, which was won by the Rangers in six games.
The Angels made a nice comeback over the last few weeks thanks to interleague action, by posting an 11-5 mark. The Halos swept the Rockies in Colorado, while winning three of the first four meetings with the rival Dodgers. Jered Weaver returned from the disabled list to shut down the Giants last Thursday, as the Angels' pitching staff has the cashed the 'under' in seven of the previous 10 interleague games.
Not one team dominated from the National League, but the one club that stuck out in a negative way was the Colorado Rockies. Jim Tracy's squad won just two of 14 games, including Saturday's surprising blowout of Texas. The Rockies lost all nine games at home, while getting swept by the Mariners and Athletics. Colorado has sunk to near the bottom of the NL West before the end of June, as the Rockies welcome in the Nationals for a four-game series starting Monday.