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Parlays are for suckers and few professional sports bettors would ever give them one publicly. But, for whatever reason, I run hotter in MLB parlays than when I bet single games.
It sucks however I’d rather parlay two decent-sized favorites for a plus-money payout than bet an underdog, expensive favorite and definitely a run line.
In 2023’s MLB there is a big gap between the “haves” and “have nots”. That’s not exactly the case for the 1st leg of my parlay but it is for the 2nd. Either way, I’m backing two of the AL’s best starters on Tuesday.
New York Yankees (6-4) at Cleveland Guardians (7-4), 6:10 p.m. ET
Cleveland won the series opener Monday 3-2 even though NYY jumped on Guardians starting RHP Shane Bieber with a 2-run double by Giancarlo Stanton in the top of the 1st. Bieber settled in, Cleveland kept grinding and stole one Monday.
Technically, the Yankees already got revenge for the Guardians 1B Josh Naylor‘s “rocking the baby” nonsense after a home run vs. Gerrit Cole in Game 4 of the 2022 AL Division Series.
Naylor’s solo HR got Cleveland one run closer in a game the Guardians ended up losing anyway, 4-2. When NYY beat Cleveland in Game 5 of the ALDS and eliminated the Guardians, the Yankees let them have it.
Even though the Yankees handled this in the 2022 ALDS, something tells me that wasn’t good enough for Cole. Last year was a down-year for Cole based on his sky-high standards. But, Cole is dialed in thus far in 2023.
He is 2-0 through his first two starts with only 1 ER in 12 1/3 IP. Cole’s whiff rate, contact rate, K/9, FIP (“fielding independent pitching”) and xFIP are all better year over year. Cole was 4-0 vs. the Guardians in 2022 including 2-0 in the ALDS.
NYY’s hitting and relief pitching have been much better through the 1st 11 games of the season. The Yankees’ lineup ranks 3rd in wRC+ (the Guardians are 24th) and their bullpen ranks 2nd in FIP (Cleveland is 17th), per FanGraphs.
Finally, NYY opened as -150 moneyline favorites but got quickly steamed up to -175 as of 5 a.m. ET Tuesday morning. We are getting late to the party on the Yankees but at least we know they are getting sharp line movement.
Detroit Tigers (2-7) at Toronto Blue Jays (6-4), 7:07 p.m. ET
Toronto has won back-to-back (B2B) road series over the Royals and the Angels and Tuesday is the Blue Jays’ home opener. Detroit got swept by the Red Sox and Rays, sandwiched in between was B2B wins over the Astros.
The Tigers give starting LHP Matt Manning (1-0, 3.18 ERA) the nod Tuesday while the Blue Jays send RHP Alex Manoah (1-0, 4.35 ERA) to the hill.
Imma just come out with this now: I’m a big Manoah-guy. This is Manoah’s 3rd MLB season and he is 26-9 with a career 2.65 ERA and 0.9 HR/9.
In 2022, Manoah’s four pitches all had minus-run values (RV), which is a good thing, per Statcast. His 4-seam fastball was one of the best pitches in MLB last season.
Manoah was in the 92nd percentile of pitchers for hard-hit rate in 2022 and 93rd in 2021. He was in the top 25% of MLB in several other advanced analytics as well.
Also, despite beating the Astros twice, the Tigers have a terrible lineup and bullpen. In fact, Detroit’s lineup ranks dead-last in wRC+ and wOBA and the bullpen is dead-last in FIP, per FanGraphs.
The same early line movement on the NYY above is headed in Toronto’s direction. The Blue Jays opened as -250 favorites and are up to -275 as of early Tuesday morning.
MLB ‘Donkey’ Parlay: Yankees & Blue Jays moneylines (+116) at DraftKings Sportsbook
- Just in case you got this far and still don’t know. A “parlay” is when you pair two spreads together and they both have to win for the bet to cash.
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