Yankees vs. Rays odds, pick, best bet today: Tampa Bay struggling

On Monday, the New York Yankees became the first team in the Major Leagues to hit the 50-win plateau. Astonishingly, it only took 67 games for the Yankees to get there. Perhaps more impressive is that the Bronx Bombers started the season with a 7-6 record and had plenty of folks wondering if this was going to be another disappointing season for the 27-time champs.

Doesn’t look that way now.

The Yankees are in a class of their own this season, and the betting market has responded in kind. The Yanks have closed as the favorite in 62 of their 67 games this season and will do so once again on Tuesday night as they take on the Tampa Bay Rays.

Yankees vs. Rays odds

Odds provided by BetMGM

Spread: NYY -1.5 +100) vs. TB +1.5 (-120)

Moneyline: NYY (-185) vs. TB (+150)

Total: Over 7 (-115) | Under 7 (-105)

Nestor Cortes
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Yankees vs. Rays pick and best bet

For the second time in less than a week, the Rays will go with Jalen Beeks as the opener for a bullpen game against the Yankees. The Bombers defeated the Rays, 2-1, in the reverse fixture with Beeks hurling two scoreless innings to get Tampa off and running. Beeks has now allowed just one earned run in his last 15.1 innings pitched and has lowered his ERA to a measly 1.29 through 28 IP this season.

Opposite Beeks will be Nestor Cortes, who is unbelievably the third-favorite to win the Cy Young behind Shane McClanahan and Justin Verlander. Cortes comes into Tuesday night sporting a 1.94 ERA through 69.2 innings of work. 

As good as Cortes has been — and he’s been dominant — we’ve probably reached the high-water mark in terms of betting perception on the 27-year-old. Cortes’ peripheral numbers are still impressive, but his 3.49 xFIP does suggest that his ERA should tick up some as the season goes on. 

Randy Arozarena
Randy Arozarena
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Although Sean Zerillo’s Action Network MLB Model grades this Over/Under as pretty fair, some raw handicapping should open the door for over bettors. This is the second time that the Yankees will see Beeks and the Rays bullpen in less than a week, so it would make sense that the Bombers would be able to produce more scoring opportunities. Similarly, Cortes’ last start came against the Rays on June 15, so the familiarity could pay off the other way as well. 

This game certainly has the potential to be pretty tight, but this is a good sell-high spot on a couple of pitchers that should come back down to earth some. Plus, there’s always the possibility that the Yanks — who rank at the top of the league in basically every offensive metric — cash this total all by themselves.

Yankees vs. Rays best bet

 Over 7 (-115) — BetMGM

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