MLB Picks: Cleveland Indians at New York Yankees Handicapping Preview

The New York Yankees will be aiming for a four-game sweep of the Cleveland Indians in Monday’s series finale at Yankee Stadium

Cleveland Indians at New York Yankees

The New York Yankees aim for a four-game sweep of the Cleveland Indians Monday night

Cleveland has dropped 14 of its past 18 games and has been outscored, 113-52, managing two runs or fewer in 12 contests over that span.  “We have to consider ourselves fortunate,” Indians manager Manny Acta stated.  “To still be where we’re at right now.”  The club’s .201 batting average since June 2 is 20 points lower than any other AL club.  The main problem has been hitting with runners in scoring position, going 6 for 68 since that time, after leading the majors with a .303 average in RBI situations prior to June 1.  Cleveland is 25-20 versus right-handed starters and 24-17 in night contests.

Indians starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco is 5-3 with a 4.52 ERA in 11 starts this season and is coming off an impressive 1-0 home win over Minnesota last time out.  He tossed 8 1/3 shutout innings in that contest, giving up just three hits while striking out six.  Carrasco has registered a perfect 3-0 mark and 3.48 ERA in six road starts, including wins in his last two opportunities.  He has never faced the Yankees in his career.

New York has scored three more runs in this series than Cleveland has scored in dropping nine of 10.  The Yankees offense is running on all cylinders and will be entering off a season-high 18 hits, including two from shortstop Derek Jeter, who is just seven hits away from 3,000.  “I’d be lying to you if I told you I haven’t been thinking about it,” Jeter stated.  “It’s impossible for that not to be in your head, because I’m around that all the time.”  The club has won nine of its last 13 games and moved its MLB-best daytime record to 17-3 with the 9-1 win Sunday.  New York is 1-4 after three or more consecutive wins this season and just 19-24 in night games.

Yankees starting pitcher A.J. Burnett is making his 14th start of the season and has posted a 6-4 mark and 4.37 ERA.  The right-hander last started on June 8 versus Boston and lost for the first time since May 16, giving up a season-high eight runs (seven earned) in 5 2/3 innings.  Burnett has made eight starts at home this season, going 5-2 with a 4.47 ERA.  Since joining the Yankees, he is 15-12 with a 4.09 ERA at Yankee Stadium, as opposed to being 14-16 with a 5.06 ERA on the road.  He is likely set up for a solid start in not facing an American League East opponent tonight, tallying a 2-2 record and 7.14 ERA in five starts versus division opponents, while going 3-2 with a 2.60 ERA in seven starts against the rest of the league.

Bettors will likely play the Indians due to their 4-1 record in Carrasco’s last five starts, while the Yankees are 0-7 in Burnett’s last seven outings on Monday.

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