New York Yankees
The Texas Rangers finally broke through with their first ever home victory in the postseason in franchise history in Game 2 of the ALCS. This series shifts to the Bronx on Monday night though, as the New York Yankees are waiting to pounce in this MLB betting battle.
There would be no comeback in Game 2. Just one day after making mincemeat out of the Texas bullpen, New York was able to pull off no such dramatics for a second straight game, making it settle for a split in the Lone Star State.
The Rangers used small ball, including six walks and four stolen bases to produce a whopping seven runs off of RHP Phil Hughes, beating him for the first time in his career. It was a great day for those Texas relievers. Even though the five of them combined to walk four batters in just 3.1 innings of work, the job was ultimately taken care of, and the comfortable five run victory was preserved.
Even though 2B Robinson Cano is batting .556 in this series, he made out twice in crucial spots with men on in scoring position, seemingly wasting his solo homer in the sixth inning.
LHP Cliff Lee was simply the man against the Tampa Bay Rays in the ALDS. He single handedly outpitched the man who will arguably win the Cy Young Award this year in LHP David Price, and he closed out the best of five series by tossing a complete game, and allowing just one run in the process. Lee has now thrown 16 innings so far in the postseason and has given up 11 hits and two runs without a walk. He also has 21 strikeouts, which is now a record for a single ALDS. Against New York, Lee is just 6-4 with a 4.42 ERA, but he did toss eight solid innings against them in his most recent start, winning 4-1.
LHP Andy Pettitte has his work cut out for him going up against arguably the top arm in the game going right now. The veteran southpaw did pick up the win in the second game of the ALDS against the Minnesota Twins, going seven innings and allowing just two runs in his best start since coming back from the DL in September. Pettitte is 11-9 in his career against these Rangers, but he has a woeful 5.24 ERA to show for it. The victory against the Twins marked Pettitte's first since July 8th, one of the longest stretches between victories in his entire career.
We just can't miss taking the Yanks as underdogs at home. We don't care whether it's Cliff Lee or Cy Young himself pitching, New York is definitely the play to win this game at least half the time, especially with a solid veteran like Pettitte to turn the ball over to. If he can stick even close to stride for stride with Lee and this becomes a bullpen game, we love our chances.
Selection: New York Yankees +105