New York Yankees vs. Oakland Athletics Pick 8/20/19

by | Aug 20, 2019 | mlb

New York Yankees (83-43) vs. Oakland Athletics (71-53)
When: 10 p.m., Tuesday, August 20
Where: Oakland Coliseum, Oakland, Calif.

Moneyline: NYY -135/OAK +125 (BetOnline)
Runline: Yanks -1.5/A’s +1.5
Total: 9.5

Starting Pitchers: Domingo German (16-2, 3.96 ERA, 1.10 WHIP) vs. Homer Bailey (10-8, 5.22 ERA, 1.40 WHIP)

German Dominance

The name is pronounced differently, but Domingo German has proven as efficient on the mound for the Yankees in 2019 as Die Mannschaft were in their march to the 2014 World Cup title. He’s been the winning pitcher in seven of his past eight starts, and all eight have gone into the win column for New York. You’ve got to go all the way back to June 7 against Cleveland for the last time German was the loser, and that gets an asterisk because he immediately visited the injured list for a month after that start.

Where he’s really excelled is in limiting the damage that teams can do against him. In his past three starts, he’s given up seven runs, and six of them came because of home runs. Only Toronto was able to manufacture any runs against German, and by the time the Blue Jays did that successfully, the Yankees already owned an 8-2 lead.

Bouncing Bailey

When Homer Bailey is on his game, he’s still got the talent to be one of the better pitchers in baseball. The 33-year-old can still be dominant in the right situation, as he showed in his last start against San Francisco, where he held the Giants to two hits and no runs in seven innings’ worth of work. But when Bailey doesn’t have it, he becomes one of the most easily hittable pitchers in the game, as he showed in the start before the Giants start, which saw him give up six hits and seven earned runs in a 10-1 loss to the Cubs.

So which Bailey will show up against the Yankees? That’s the question. The good news is that Bailey has seemed to embrace pitching at the Oakland Coliseum, holding all three of his opponents to three runs or less in his appearances in Oakland since being traded from Kansas City. The bad news is that the only team that the Athletics beat that has the look of a playoff team with Bailey on the mound at home was Milwaukee, as Texas and Seattle likely won’t be in the postseason. That begs the question: how much of Bailey’s success was him and how much was the schedule?

Homer Happy

This game could be one that sees several baseballs leave the yard. Bailey’s inconsistency on the mound is well documented, and the only team that slugs the ball better than the Yankees is the Twins. New York has hit 227 home runs this season, an average of 1.8 per game. If Bailey doesn’t have his best stuff, he’s not going to be able to keep the ball in the park against this lineup.

But that said, there’s a good chance that German won’t be able to prevent the big fly either. For one, Oakland also knows how to hit it deep. The Athletics don’t have the power that the Yankees do, but 196 home runs on the season is nothing to scoff at, as it’s good for ninth overall in baseball. For another, as great as German has been this season, he does have a weakness: he makes one to two mistakes per game that batters can hit a mile. In his past six starts, he has averaged two home runs conceded per game, relying on his offense to overcome mistakes for him. Since summer temperatures arrived in May, German hasn’t been able to avoid the home run: 12 of his past 15 starts have seen at least one home run fly out off one of his pitches.

The Historicals

They say revenge is best served cold, but in this case, it’s been so long since these teams last met that it’s ice-cold and almost been forgotten about by much of America. Though it seems like forever ago, the Yankees were the team that ended the Athletics’ season a year ago, as New York won the wild card game after winning 100 games to Oakland’s 97, beating the A’s 7-2 to end Oakland’s season. The teams have not played since but will meet six times before all is said and done this season.

Betting Trends

  • The Yankees have won German’s past four road starts.
  • The Yankees are 4-1 in their past five against the AL West.
  • The Athletics have won 9 of their past 10 Tuesday games.
  • The Athletics are 5-1 in their past six against a right-handed starter.
  • The over is 5-0 in German’s past five Tuesday starts.
  • The over is 5-2 in the past seven meetings between the teams

Weather Report

At 62 degrees, it might seem a tad chilly for August, but this should be a great night for baseball in Oakland.

Dan’s pick

The Yankees haven’t done that great in Oakland as of late, losing six of their past seven matchups against the Athletics in California. That and the fact that Oakland comes in having just won four of five while the Yankees struggled against Cleveland at home gives me some concern about backing the Yankees as a road favorite.

But the fact is, German is pitching so well right now, and Bailey is so inconsistent that I have to lean toward the Yankees on this one. German might have some problems keeping the ball in the park, but at least when he gives up a bomb, he tends to do it with nobody on base. Not so with Bailey, who hasn’t faced a lineup of New York’s power since being traded to Oakland. He won’t be intimidated given what he’s been through in his career, but he also likely won’t be a top performer in this contest.

The pitching matchup makes this too big a risk to trust Oakland. Give me the Yankees here.

Take the NY Yankees

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