We now return you to your regularly scheduled
baseball betting schedule as another season of interleague play is behind
us. Among the 13 games on Monday's card
is the first meeting of 2012 between the New York Yankees and Cleveland
We now return you to your regularly scheduled baseball
betting schedule as another season of interleague play is behind us. Among the 13 games on Monday's card is the
first meeting of 2012 between the New York Yankees and Cleveland Indians.
It is a rather anticlimactic pitching matchup following the marquee
mound battle on Sunday night as Josh Tomlin takes his turn for the Tribe
opposite New York's
Hiroki Kuroda. Still, the worldwide
leader in sports thinks enough of the game to give it some love on ESPN2,
probably saving prime time on the big ESPN for more Stephen A. Smith commentary
about LeBron James.
Monday morning finds the MLB odds sitting at -185 on the
Yankees. The Tomlin-Kuroda pairing is
not expected to be a pitching duel with the 9.5 run total priced to the OVER.
Among the teams sad to see interleague play go are the Yankees
who finished up a 13-5 run through the NL portion of their schedule with a 6-5
victory at the Mets on Sunday night. New York won four of the
six series, strangely enough the only two series losses coming at home, and
swept through the Nationals, Braves and Mets during one memorable stretch.
It has all been part of a 17-5 surge since late May that has
pushed the pinstripes to a 2.5 game lead in the AL East and the second-best
record in the American League (43-28, +4.7 units).
Cleveland has not enjoyed the
month of June so much with a 10-11 mark, dropping two of three in Houston over the weekend to
fall out of the AL Central lead. The skid
has the Indians (37-34, +3.2 units) sitting a half-game behind the Chicago
White Sox, and for those already tracking this, fifth in the AL wild card chase
as the 2012 campaign heads toward the midpoint.
Tomlin may own an ERA above five, but the Indians still have
a winning 6-4 record in his 10 starts. The former Red Raider from Texas Tech also has a plus mark in three
career assignments vs. the Yankees at 2-1. The caveat is both wins came in Cleveland
while his lone outing at Yankee Stadium was a rough one just about a year ago
when he was charged with six runs over the course of five innings.
York is a sub-.500 squad behind Kuroda at 6-8 with
the consistency just not there from start-to-start. The former Dodger is coming off consecutive
starts vs. the Braves, winning one and losing the other while allowing six runs
in the 13 innings combined. Monday will mark his first career assignment
against the Tribe.
The only new injury worth mentioning for either club is New York catcher Russell
Martin, who is officially questionable for the series opener after experiencing
back stiffness this past weekend vs. the Mets.
He missed Sunday's game entirely, and skipper Joe Girardi might give him
a second full day off while Chris Stewart gets another start behind the
dish. If so, it would be just the second
time this season that Stewart and Kuroda have served as battery mates.
This is the first meeting between the two teams this season with
the Yankees leading the all-time series 1,095-869. New York won
four of seven a year ago, including three of the four played in the Bronx where the Yanks are 53-27 vs. the Indians since
Taking a Chance: I know
what you are thinking. If the Yankees
and Mets can score 11 runs with Sabathia and Dickey on the mound, surely the
Tribe and Yanks can plate at least 10 with Tomlin and Kuroda doing the
pitching. You could be right, but I am a little concerned with the weather
right now to play the total either direction. Rain is in the forecast throughout the day, but is supposed to taper off
in the evening hours, so monitor that before you do go to the window.
Instead of the total,
I like a little play on the underdog in this scrap and will make my pick on the
Indians +175. Check back on Tuesday when
we take a look at the Angels and Orioles contest at Camden Yards.