Blue Jays vs. Yankees prop pick: Bet on Yankees vs. Kikuchi bat awakening

The Toronto Blue Jays have a chance to position themselves for a second series win of the young season on Tuesday with a victory over the New York Yankees.

The pre-game story: Toronto won Game 1 in the Bronx by shutting out New York 3-0 last night. Now, Yusei Kikuchi will make his Blue Jays debut against a roster with plenty of right-handed power, but he’ll be backed by a heavy right roster that will also benefit from facing a southpaw in Nestor Cortes.

Here are our top Blue Jays vs. Yankees prop picks for Tuesday’s game.

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Blue Jays vs. Yankees prop picks preview

  • Yusei Kikuchi on 2.5 earned runs (-120)
  • Santiago Espinal scores a point (+165)
  • Giancarlo Stanton on 1.5 bases (+120)

Blue Jays vs. Yankees Prop Picks

Best bet: Kikuchi on 2.5 earned runs (-120)

Kikuchi’s inconsistency makes him a tough pitcher to predict in any all-around, but it’s clear the Yankees are a tough game for him.

Read more: Best Blue Jays vs. Yankees Betting Picks

New York’s lineup is designed to crush the left-handed throw and its ability to do so was only improved by the addition of Josh Donaldson, whose career OPS against left-handers is .945.

Navigating a formation with Donaldson, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton sounds like a daunting task for a left-handed pitcher, but it could be especially difficult for someone like Kikuchi who has pronounced his own left-right splits:

right-handed AVERAGE OBP SLG
To the right .282 .349 .500
Left .214 .270 .381

Kikuchi’s impartiality won’t be his only problem against the Yankees. New York’s patience is also likely to give him tantrums.

The Yankees led the Majors in walk rate last season (10.2%) and the addition of Donaldson helps in that area as well.

Kikuchi struggles with his command and has recorded an above average walk rate over the past two seasons (3.55 BB/9). The southpaw could find himself fighting from behind in the count consistently against a formation more than capable of making him pay.

Key stat: Kikuchi has allowed three or more runs in 17 of 29 starts in 2021, including five of his last seven.

Read more: MLB betting strategies you need to know

Quick Picks

Santiago Espinal scores a point (+165): Even if you don’t buy that Espinal’s hot start is significant, this line has great value. In nine innings the infielder played start to finish last season, he scored 45.8% of the time – well above that line’s implied probability (37.7%).

The 27-year-old also thrived against left-handed pitchers during his brief MLB career, posting a .375 OBP against left-handers. Espinal has a good chance to be on base in this game and will have the best Blue Jays lineup behind him.

Giancarlo Stanton on 1.5 bases (+120): Since Stanton debuted in 2010, he ranks third in the majors in home runs against left-handed pitcher (94) and second in OPS (1.004). The big hitter isn’t a bad bet for extra bases in any given game, but it’s especially wise to bet on him in matchups against non-elite southpaws.

Odds provided by Sportingbet as of 9:52am ET on 04/12/2022.

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Nick Ashbourne writes about sports betting for NorthStar Bets. NorthStar Bets is owned by NordStar Capital, which also owns Torstar, Star’s parent company. Follow him on Twitter: @NickAshbourne

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