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Last Updated May 26, 2022, 22:28 PM

New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay Ray Picks, Predictions, Odds

The New York Yankees (31-13) will take on the Tampa Bay Rays (26-17) Thursday for game-one of a four-game series. First pitch is scheduled for 6:40 PM ET at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida and can be viewed on MLB Network. 

Score Prediction

Yankees 4, Rays 2

Best Bets 

New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay Rays Betting Predictions

The New York Yankees enter this matchup atop the AL East standings with a four and a half game lead over Tampa Bay. New York has been playing great baseball this season, but are on their worst stretch to date, losing three of their last four. The offense has been excellent, but bad news came Wednesday as Giancarlo Stanton has been placed on the 10-day injured list with a calf strain. The Yankees bullpen has been excellent and have held opponents to three runs or less 21 times this season. Left-handed pitcher Nestor Cortes is scheduled to start Thursday. Cortes is 3-1 in eight games this season with an ERA of 1.80 and has allowed 29 hits, nine earned runs and struck out 56 batters in 45.0 innings.  

The Tampa Bay Rays will look to gain some ground on the Yankees in this series for command of the AL East. Tampa Bay has won four of their last six games and scored below six runs in just one of those outings. The bats have been a bit inconsistent, but are starting to find a rhythm as of late. The bullpen has been great and is a big part of why this ball club has seen the success it has this season. Left-handed relief pitcher Ryan Yarbrough is expected to take the mound Thursday. Yarbrough is 0-0 in four games this season with an ERA of 4.20 and has given up 18 hits, seven earned runs, and struck out 12 batters in 15.0 innings of work.  

I like the total to go under in game one of this series. Cortes has arguably been the Yankees best pitcher and should make it tough on the Rays hitters. The Yankees will be without a few of their big bats including Joey Gallo (COVID), Josh Donaldson (COVID), DJ LeMahieu (wrist), and Giancarlo Stanton (calf). Back the under in this matchup as it should be a low scoring game.

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New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay Rays Betting Odds

  • Yankees -130
  • Rays +110
  • Yankees -1.5 (+130)
  • Rays +1.5 (-150)
  • Over 7.5 (+100)
  • Under 7.5 (-120)

MLB Odds | World Series Odds | Expert Picks

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New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay Rays Betting Resources

  • Date: Thursday, May 26, 2022
  • Matchup: AL East
  • Stadium: Tropicana Field
  • Location: St. Petersburg, Florida
  • TV-Time: MLBN - 6:40 p.m.

New York Yankees Betting Analysis

After defeating the Orioles Wednesday, the Yankees are 31-13 SU, 22-22 ATS, and have an O/U record of 19-24-1. The total has gone over in four of New York’s last six games. Following this trend, the total has gone over in four of their last five against an American League East opponent. The Yankees are 11-5 SU in their last 16 games and 14-6 SU on the road this season.  

New York has been one of the top hitting teams in the league this season. As a team the Yankees have a batting average of .242 (13th), on base percentage of .323 (8th), slugging percentage of .417 (2nd), and have scored 208 runs (5th). Aaron Judge is having another all-star caliber season with a batting average of .314, 17 home runs, and 34 RBIs. First baseman Anthony Rizzo is having a nice season as well with a batting average of .232 (35-151), 11 home runs, and 16 RBIs.  

The Yankees bullpen is having a great season. As a team they are allowing opponents a batting average of .223 (7th), have a WHIP of 1.11 (4th), and have an ERA of 3.03 (3rd). Left-handed pitcher Nestor Cortes is scheduled to start Thursday. Cortes is 3-1 in eight games this season with an ERA of 1.80 and has allowed 29 hits, nine earned runs and struck out 56 batters in 45.0 innings. Cortes went 0-1 in two games against the Rays last season, but allowed just eight hits and three-runs in 9.2 innings.  

Tampa Bay Rays Betting Analysis

After defeating the Marlins on Wednesday, the Rays are 26-17 SU, 21-22 ATS, and have an O/U record of 20-21-2. The Rays are 4-2 SU in their last six games. The total has gone over in 13 of their last 20 games when playing an opponent from the National League. Going against this trend, the total has gone under in four of their last six when playing an NL East opponent. Tampa Bay is 15-9 SU at home this season.  

Tampa Bay’s offense is starting to find more and more consistency as the season progresses. As a team the Rays have a batting average of .242 (14th), on base percentage of .304 (19th), slugging percentage of .396 (13th), and have scored 189 runs (12th).  Right fielder Randy Arozarena has been solid with a batting average of .264 (42-159), four home runs, and 16 RBIs. Shortstop Wander Franco is also playing well with a batting average of .255 (40-157), four home runs, and 16 RBIs.  

The Rays bullpen has been superb this season. As a team they are allowing opponents a batting average of .218 (4th), have a WHIP of 1.10 (2nd), and have an ERA of 3.31 (5th). Left-handed relief pitcher Ryan Yarbrough is expected to take the mound Thursday. Yarbrough is 0-0 in four games this season with an ERA of 4.20 and has given up 18 hits, seven earned runs, and struck out 12 batters in 15.0 innings of work.

Key Players to Watch

  • NYY: Aaron Judge - OF (Last Game: 1-4, 2B, R)
  • NYY: Gleybar Torres - 2B (Last Game: 1-3, R)
  • TMB: Wander Franco - SS (Last Game: 2-4, 2 2B, R)
  • TMB: Randy Arozarena - OF (Last Game: 1-4, 2B, R, 2 RBI)

Probable Pitchers

  • NYY: Nestor Cortes - LHP (3-1, 1.80 ERA, 56 K, 0.89 WHIP)
  • TMB: Ryan Yarbrough - LHP (0-0, 4.20 ERA, 12 K, 1.67 WHIP)

New York Yankees vs. Tampa Bay Rays Betting Conclusion

I think the results of this matchup could go either way, but I do expect it to be low scoring. The Yankees will be without a few of their big hitters which should affect their scoring production. The Rays have not been the best hitting team and should struggle against Cortes in this one. Backing the under in game one of this series.  

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