Oakland Athletics vs. New York Yankees Pick 8/30/19
Oakland Athletics (77-56) vs. New York Yankees (88-47)
When: 7:05 p.m., Friday, August 30
Where: Yankee Stadium, New York
Moneyline: OAK +130/NYY -140
Runline: A’s +1.5/Yanks -1.5
Starting Pitchers: Brett Anderson (10-9, 4.08 ERA, 1.30 WHIP) vs. CC Sabathia (5-8, 4.99 ERA, 1.41 WHIP)
There’s one big difference between the last time the Yankees faced the Athletics and this time: Aaron Judge’s bat is hot again. Judge struggled through the first two games in Oakland, going 1-for-9 against the A’s, but he got two hits in the third game and has hit safely in every game since. His hit streak is at seven games, and he’s hit 13-for-30 during that stretch, good for a .433 clip. If Judge is hitting, the Yankees become infinitely more challenging to beat.
Is it a slump for Sabathia, or is time starting to catch up to the 39-year-old left-hander? Sabathia has not pitched well or long in his past four outings, giving up at least four runs in three of them and failing to get out of the fourth inning in any of them. Sabathia even went on the injured list because of inflammation in his knee after giving up five runs to Boston, but he came back and gave up four to Cleveland. While he pitched well against the Dodgers, holding them to two runs, he only made it four innings, so that gets an asterisk. The reality is that Sabathia isn’t fooling hitters right now, and the Yankees have had to trust their bullpen a lot longer than usual when he’s on the rubber.
No Backing for Brett
However, it’s not like his opponent Brett Anderson is doing any better at getting a win for his club. Anderson, unlike Sabathia, has routinely made it to the sixth inning and has usually held the opposition to three runs or less, doing so in four of his past six starts. However, the thing he hasn’t done is win. Only one of his performances, an 11-4 triumph over the Cubs, has gone his way on the scoreboard, and that was because he finally got some run support to back up a solid pitching performance. Otherwise, he’s watched the Athletics score 4, 1, 2, 2 and three runs for him respectively, which haven’t been good enough to get him a win and have usually left him saddled with a loss.
This is a possible playoff preview if the Yankees can hold off Houston and the Athletics can fight through Tampa Bay and the AL Central loser. With four weeks left in the season and an 11-game lead, the Yankees can probably safely call themselves AL East champions, but they’re only a game away from losing the top seed to Houston and having to play the AL Central champion instead of the wild card. Oakland, on the other hand, knows it won’t erase Houston’s nine-game lead for the AL West, and its focus is on holding off Tampa Bay to face either Cleveland or Minnesota in the wild card game. The Athletics dominated the Yankees in Oakland for a three-game sweep, and going to Yankee Stadium hasn’t been an issue for the green and gold: they’re 5-4 in the Bronx over the past three seasons.
- The Athletics are 6-1 in their past seven Friday games.
- The Athletics are 7-1 in Anderson’s past eight road starts.
- The Yankees are 7-0 in their past seven home games against a left-handed starter.
- The Yankees have lost Sabathia’s past four starts.
- The over is 8-1 in the Yankees’ past nine home games.
- The over is 4-1 in the Athletics’ past five road games.
Fall has arrived in New York, with the temperature down to just 66 degrees.
Sabathia just is not getting the job done, and there’s no sign that’s going to change anytime soon. The Athletics, meanwhile, haven’t had that problem with Anderson; they just haven’t been able to get him enough run support. Anderson is pitching fairly well as of late and does much better away from Oakland, so this is tailor-made for him to have a strong game. Plus, the Athletics are an excellent underdog this season, having gone 37-18 as the underdog. Even with Judge hitting the ball well, I think Sabathia’s struggles are going to continue. Give me Oakland.
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