We’re at the halfway point of the regular season and neither the Red Sox nor the Yankees can lose the other in the division standings. Most of us have seen this episode before.
Boston took two out of three against New York at Fenway Park back when the Red Sox were world-beaters and the Yankees were ordinary. The roles reversed a few weeks later at the Stadium as the Bombers were in the midst of making their comeback.
A pair of left-handers will start the opener of act three with first-place on the line.
CC Sabathia starts for New York on six days of rest. He’s made 14 starts this season and the Yankees ought to be better than just 7–7.
Sabathia doesn’t pitch into the eighth inning anymore, or strike many guys out (though he did K 10 two starts ago against Tampa Bay) but he rarely gets knocked around either. He has allowed more than three earned runs only twice in those 14 starts and he’s given up either one or nothing in half of them.
The Red Sox did hit Sabathia with one of those “bad” starts when they plated four in four innings back in early May. He’s a finesse pitcher now and Boston isn’t the easiest lineup for him to exploit because of the raw talent at the top and the discipline at the bottom.
But I trust him more at home than I do Eduardo Rodriguez, who has had a fantastic year, on the road. E-Rod broke onto the scene a few seasons back but he’s never been steadier than he has been in the first half of 2018. He has not allowed more than three runs in 12 of his 15 starts and the Red Sox are 13–2 in the games he’s started. Most importantly, he looks like a confident big league starter that fully trusts his stuff.
I tend to believe this Yankees team is superior to Boston’s, even without Gary Sanchez, who will miss the next few weeks. I’ve had to try to convince many of my friends and family back home of this, generally unsuccessfully. I see a lot more holes in Boston’s lineup than New York’s and I know for a fact the Yankees’ bullpen is of a much higher quality.
They are also playing at home after a day off Thursday. I’m more than willing to lay 6 to win 5.
Free Pick: New York -120