Oakland Athletics vs New York Yankees, May 26th

by Kevin Roberts
on May 26, 2017

We’re always looking for that playable upset when it comes to MLB betting and we may have another spot to consider on Friday night. The Oakland Athletics could potentially be catching the New York Yankees at the perfect time, as the Yanks are floundering at the moment, going a pedestrian 5-5 over their last 10 games.

Oakland can’t say they’ve been doing much better (they’ve also gone 5-5 in that same span), while the A’s are always a troublesome upset play (6-15) when they’re not at home. The Athletics do bring some dangerous power to the table tonight, however, while they’ll also be experiencing a positive park shift as they gear up for the ever-hittable Yankee Stadium.

The knee-jerk reaction isn’t to ditch the Yanks here, but New York has given up the 6th most home runs on the year and simply hasn’t been in top form lately, going just 3-4 over their last seven contests specifically. New York’s offense has left them hanging in those games, too, putting up more than 5 runs zero times.

That could have to change in tonight’s showdown, where Oakland could be looking to swing some heavy bats a little harder in an advantageous spot.

Oakland Athletics (+143)
New York Yankees (-166)
Total: 9.5

If this game has the potential to explode into a fire storm, we certainly want to consider betting on the Athletics. At first glance, it’s clear Vegas feels it could, as we get a friendly 9.5 Total to get things started and both pitchers could easily end up cratering in this match up.

Kendall Graveman (2-2, 3.83 ERA) is understandably in a tough spot on the road in a hitter’s park, as he’ll get a nasty Yankees lineup that ranks second in the majors in batting average against right-handed pitching (7th in homers). Graveman has surprisingly kept it together so far in 2017, however, giving up more than two runs in just two starts all season.

We’re not here to back Graveman, but perhaps Oakland’s bats. Masahiro Tanaka (5-3, 6.56 ERA) will toe the rubber for the Yanks on the other side and for much of 2017. Tanaka got shelled by the Rays in his 2017 debut and has gotten absolutely lit up (16 hits, 14 runs) over his last two starts.

Tanaka could easily snap out of this horrid funk, but what if he doesn’t? Yankee Stadium is no place to shake issues with the long ball, and the 28-year old righty certainly has had issues there, giving up 7 dongs in his last two trips to the mound alone. Tanaka has a 3-1 record at home this year, but he sports a nasty 6.75 ERA at Yankee Stadium and draws an unenviable matchup with an Oakland offense that ranks second in MLB in home runs (56) against righties.

This is a risky play, but Tanaka hasn’t proven to be in top form, the Yanks as a whole have not been their elite selves lately and Oakland could be in a fine spot. We’d prefer longer odds to offer up more profit, but we’ll still gladly take this bet and swing for the fences. The Over is naturally also in play in this one.

Pick: Athletics (+143)
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