The Kansas City Royals are in the Big Apple to continue their series against the New York Yankees. The Royals managed to hold on for an exciting victory last night, surviving a strong eighth inning rally from the Yankees to notch their 33rd win of the year. New York will look to rebound in game two of the series and gain some ground on the AL East division race. It’s time to continue our MLB odds series and make a Royals – Yankees prediction and pick.
Here’s how the sportsbooks have set the opening Royals vs. Yankees odds.
MLB Odds: Royals-Yankees Odds
Royals ML (+161)
Yankees ML (-175)
Over 9 1/2 runs (-115)
Under 9 1/2 runs (-105)
Why The Royals Could Cover The Spread
The Royals have been a surprisingly competitive team this season. They did just go through a recent losing streak, but Kansas City gets a very important player back for tonight’s game. Staff ace Danny Duffy is expected to be activated to face the Yankees.
Duffy hasn’t pitched since mid-May, but he is easily the best starting pitcher on the Royals roster. His return should provide the Royals with some stability on the mound, something they have been sorely lacking. Kansas City’s staff as a whole is also slightly better on the road, allowing one less hit per game.
While the Royals are celebrating the return of their ace, the Yankees will be starting someone who is far from the best pitcher on his team.
Michael King spent the early part of the season coming out of the bullpen for the Yankees, and he’ll make his fourth start tonight. His first three were less than stellar, as over those outings he combined to pitch 12 innings and allow 9 runs. If there’s anyone in the Yankees rotation who the Royals can punish, it’s King.
Why The Yankees Could Cover The Spread
The Yankees always have a great shot at winning because of a very simple factor: Their lineup. While the Bronx Bombers have looked a little streaky recently, that could turn around in a heartbeat. With power hitters up and down the lineup, there’s hardly any room for error by enemy pitchers, which doesn’t bode well for the Royals pitching staff.
Opposing starter Danny Duffy looked good in most of his starts, but the last few before his injury were shaky. He lost two consecutive starts, allowing 7 runs over 11 innings. Coming off an injury is never easy, so some shakiness should be expected from Duffy. Duffy has also never pitched this well in his eleven year career, so general regression from his 1.94 ERA should also be expected.
Despite having an iffy starter on the mound, the Yankees should be fairly confident about their pitching situation. If Michael King can pitch five solid innings, he can hand the ball off to one of the best bullpens in the MLB. Looking past the blown lead yesterday, the Yankees relievers have been extremely reliable.
Final Royals-Yankees Prediction & Pick
Even though the Royals have been hot lately, I can’t see the Yankees dropping two in a row to them. Danny Duffy is coming off a long absence and should have some rust to dust off. The Yankees should be able to get to Duffy early, and the Royals lineup doesn’t scare me.
FINAL PICK: Yankees ML (-175)