20* graded play taking the UNDER in the NYY-Mets subway interleague series set to start at 7:05 PM ET.

The Yankees (41-27) had won 10 straight games before losing their last two games. The Yankees are in first place in the hotly contested American League East division leading Baltimore by 2 ½ games. All five teams are within 6 ½ games of the front running Yankees.

The Mets (38-32) have done remarkably well and have outperformed preseason expectations by light years to this point in the season. They are in second place in the National League East division trailing the leading Washington Nationals by 3 ½ games. It will certainly be a tough decision for the Mets brass to become buyers for a playof run as the July 31 trading deadline fast approaches.

The Mets and Yankees met in a Subway Series just over a week ago, where the Yankees swep the Mets in Yankee Stadium. Can the mets extract revenge, or will the Yankees use this matchup as means to get another winning streak on the roll?

At the time of writing, MLB odds boards are listing the Yankees at -143, which is slightly down from the -150 that was on offer at the time of opening. The total has been set at 8.5 runs.

Team Rankings and Comparisons

Andy Pettitte

On paper the Yankees are the better team with a superior offensive lineup and better pitching staff based on the a wide array of statistical measures. The Yankees rank ninth with a .260 in MLB with a team batting average, 16th averaging 34.1 at-bats per game, 17th with 2.619 plate appearances, sixth averaging 4.75 runs per game, ninth averaging 8.87 hits per game, first averaging 1.54 home runs per game, ninth averaging 7.01 strikeouts per game, and 27th hitting into an average of 0.91 twin killings per game. 

By comparison, the Mets rank 14th in MLB with a .255 team batting average, 25th averaging 33.44 at-bats per game, ninth with 2.639 plate appearances, 10th averaging 4.43 runs per game, 17th averaging 8.54 hits per game, 26th averaging 0.79 home runs per game, 20th averaging 7.81 strikeouts per game, sixth averaging 3.43 walks per game, and ninth hitting into just 0.67 double plays per game. 

You can readily see that the Yankees are a power based team with essentially no team speed, while the Mets are more of a hitting and scratchy small ball type team. Both teams are very slow by measures of stolen bases. The Mets rank 25th in MLb averaging 0.71 stolen bases attempted per game and 27th with a 66% stolen base success rate. The Yankees rank 26th  averaging 0.65 stolen base attempts per game and rank third best with a 82% stolen base success rate. The Yankees stats are a bit misleading as Alex Rodriguez, who is certainly not elte speed fast, leads the team with six stolen bases.

Starting Pitchers

Andy Pettitte will toe the rubber tonight for the Yankees and he certainly has found the fountain of youth elixir this season. In seven starts he has posted a 2.77 ERA with a 1.048 WHIP and has struck out 46 batters in 48 ? innings of work. Over his last three starts his team record is a perfect 3-0 and has posted a 1.77 ERA with a 0.935 WHIP striking out 24 batters in 20 ? innings of work.

Jon Niese will be on the hill for the Mets and has posted strong season numbers and even better ones spanning his last three starts. For the season, Niese has made 13 starts and has posted a 3.82 ERA and a 1.261 WHIp striking out 74 batters in 75 ? innings of work. Over his last three starts he has posted a 1.80 ERA with a 1.100 WHIP walking just three batters while striking out 23 batters spanning 20 innings of work.

With both starting pitchers in top dominating form, it is readily obvious why I am adding the UNDER to my MLB picks for this game.

Take the UNDER