2009 World Series Game 6 Preview and Pick – Pedro Martinez vs. Andy Pettitte

2009 World Series Game Six

New York Yankees lead series 3-2

Philadelphia Phillies Pedro Martinez +185, 9.5 O/U vs. New York
Yankees Andy Pettitte -195, 9.5 O/U, Yankees Stadium, Bronx,
N.Y., 7:57 PM EST, Wednesday, November 4th, TV: FOX

by Badger of Predictem.com

Bet the World Series at reduced odds at 5Dimes.

The New York Yankees brand new stadium will get its chance to host a
World Series clinching game in its inaugural season after all, as the
Yankees and the Philadelphia Phillies will head back to the Bronx for
game six on Wednesday night on Fox.

The Phillies lived to fight another day and forced another game in
the series with their 8-6 victory over the Yankees in game five
Monday. Chase Utley hit a three-run homerun in the bottom of the
first inning off Yankees starter A.J. Burnett, who failed to get out
of the third inning and gave up six early runs to put the Yankees in
a deep hole.

But the Yankees deep lineup made it a game and actually had the game-tying run at the plate in the form of Mark Teixeira in the top of the
ninth inning, but Phillies reliever Ryan Madson struck him out to end
the threat and move the series back to New York.

Game six will feature two very familiar names on the mound, as the
Yankees will send lefty Andy Pettitte out to the bump against the
Phillies veteran right-hander Pedro Martinez.

The baseball oddsmakers in Las Vegas are expecting the Yankees to
clinch the series at home, as they opened game six with Pettitte and
the Yanks as large -190 favorites on the moneyline. The betting
public seems to agree, as early action at the window has caused the
line to move all the way up to the Yankees -200 at a few offshore
sportsbooks. That makes the Phillies and Pedro as valuable underdogs
in game six, listed anywhere from +170 all the way up to +185 at the
books that offer dimelines.

The over/under total opened at 9 and has moved up slightly to 9.5 at
a few sportsbooks, but theres still plenty of 9s on the board at a
few books so shop around if you want the hook for your over/under bet.

Game six will be worth the price of admission because of the featured
matchup on the mound alone, but its not as lopsided of a duel as it
may seem on paper nor as lopsided as the oddsmakers are making it out
to be with their odds.

Everyone already knows that Pettitte is one of the best postseason pitchers of all time, running up a 17-9 record with a 3.88 ERA and
1.32 WHIP over his storied career with both the Yankees and the
Astros. But dont get lulled to sleep by those numbers alone, as the
lefty has had his share of problems in the World Series, especially
in game six of the series.

Pettitte has started game six twice in his career, and neither of them have turned out too well. Back in 2003 Pettitte started game six
against the Florida Marlins and pitched well (7 IP, 6 H, 2 R) but was
still tagged with the loss, as Josh Beckett outdueled him in the
deciding game that gave the Marlins the Series title. He was also the
game six starter two years earlier in 2001 against Arizona, and that
start was a disaster as he only lasted two innings giving up seven
hits and six runs in the game that allowed the Diamondbacks to force
a game seven in the series they eventually won in dramatic fashion.


Pettitte threw fairly well in Saturdays game three victory by the
Yankees, 8-5, going six innings allowing five hits and four runs. But
he was by no means dominant and will also be going on just three days
rest, which worked for CC Sabathia on Sunday but failed miserably
with Burnett on Monday.

Martinez has had a long and storied career as well, but with all that hes done over the years the righty doesnt have much of a history of
pitching in deciding World Series games. In fact, Thursdays game two
start was just his second career World Series start. He pitched well
in that game (6 IP, 6 H, 3 R) but was outdueled by Burnett.

His only other start in the series was back in 2004, a stellar outing
against the St. Louis Cardinals where he went seven innings and
allowed just three hits without surrendering a run.

Pedro would like to get the run support the Phillies lineup gave
Cliff Lee last night, as Jimmy Rollins was on base three times and
Utley, Jason Werth and Raul Ibanez all chipped in with hits and RBIs
to get the Phils out to a fast start.

Utleys two homeruns on Monday helped the second baseman tie former
Yankee Reggie Jacksons mark for most World Series homeruns with
five, but slugger Ryan Howard continues to struggle as his two
strikeouts also tied a longtime World Series record for most
strikeouts in a series with 12 (tied with Willie Wilson of K.C. back
in 1980).

The Yankees lineup will try and get to Pedro early as well, as Johnny Damon continues to tear the cover off the ball with three more hits
last night. Alex Rodriguez also continues to produce this postseason,
driving in three more runs on Monday to push his new postseason
record for RBIs to 18.

But the Yankees will need to get more out of the bottom of their order if they want to end it on Wednesday, as Nick Swisher (0-for-3),
Brett Gardner (0-for-4) and Robinson Cano (1-for-3) all continue to
struggle. With the game back in Yankees Stadium the Yanks will get
the services of Hideki Matsui back in his familiar role of designated
hitter, which should help provide more balance at the bottom.

Badgers Pick: Momentum is a fickle entity, since I thought the
Yankees stole it away for good with their 9th-inning rally in game
four, only to watch the Phillies steal it right back early in game
five. I expect Pettitte to struggle on short rest and with the game
six pressure, while I feel Pedro will thrive with his full rest and
the Yankee faithful egging him on from the stands. Take the Phillies
as +185 underdogs here.