July 8th 2013 - Posted 06:00 PM Eastern Time


Take New York Yankees on the Money Line (-147) against Kansas City Royals risking 2% (Hughes and Guthrie must start)

Tonight's match-up is a classic case where one pitcher has had a lot of success against the opposing team while the other has simply struggled.

Phil Hughes (4-7, 4.55 ERA) may have struggled in the early part of the season but he has figured things out over his last 3 starts as his ERA is a minuscule 1.81 in that span. As impressive as that it, what is even more impressive is the fact that Hughes has had a great deal of success in his career against Kansas City. Hughes owns a 5-1 lifetime record against the Royals (Hughes has won 5 straight decisions) even though his ERA is up over 6.00, that is due to the fact that the Yankees have given him 31 support runs in the process.

That really isn't that surprising given the fact that the Yankees have always been able to seemingly "get to" Royals pitchers and that should continue tonight with Jeremy Guthrie (7-6, 4.29 ERA) getting the start for the Royals. Guthrie has done nothing but struggle against the Yankees in his career. Guthrie had lost 7 straight decisions to the Yankees prior to picking up a win back in 2011. Guthrie is 4-9 with a 5.32 ERA against the Yankees. When he starts his team is just 5-10 lifetime. Guthrie has also struggled against other teams recently going 0-3 with a 7.77 ERA in his last 4 starts surrendering 19 runs in just 22 innings during that span.

The Yankees had won 6 straight games before losing yesterday afternoon in dramatic fashion as Mariano Rivera gave up a 2 run home run in the 9th to give Baltimore a narrow 2-1 victory. Rivera is looking to break a major league record by becoming the only pitcher to reach 30 saves fiftenn times. He missed out on the record yesterday but given the way that Hughes has dominated the Royals in recent outings, you can bet his team will rally around him tonight to ensure he gets a second chance to make history. Yesterday's loss does sting but this situation has actually played well in Phil Hughes' favor as he is 22-3 lifetime when he gets the start in a home game after a loss.

The Yankees bats didn't show their starting pitcher a lot of support yesterday and it cost Mariano Rivera his milestone. I would expect the offense to come early and often against Guthrie and allow a good cushion for Rivera to get his 30th save tonight. Hughes has been great recently and I expect that trend to continue. This line is higher than we typically go for, however in this case we believe there is still value backing New York and won't hesitate. Take the Yankees for the win.



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