The Toronto Blue Jays (84-67) made it four wins in a row in a commanding 7-1 victory over the New York Yankees (76-75) in the Bronx on Tuesday night. Now the Jays will look to put the final nail in their rival’s postseason coffin — and stay ahead of the pack for the second AL Wild Card spot — in game two on Wednesday, with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. ET. Toronto will send ace Kevin Gausman (11-9, 3.40 ERA) to the mound, while New York counters with reliever-turned-starter Michael King (4-6, 2.77).
The Blue Jays enter as -120 favorites on the moneyline at DraftKings Sportsbook, with the Yankees at +100. The run total is set at 7.5.
Blue Jays-Yankees picks: Wednesday, September 20
Out: 1B Brandon Belt (lumbar spine muscle spasms), C Danny Jansen (fractured right middle finger)
Out: OF Jasson Domínguez (elbow), RP Ian Hamilton (right groin strain), RP Keynan Middleton (right shoulder inflammation)
Kevin Gausman vs. Michael King
Gausman has been a bit shaky of late, with a 4.32 ERA over three starts in September. His eight-inning, 10-K gem against the Royals a couple weeks ago is a testament to how great his stuff still is, though, and he’s absolutely owned New York throughout his time with the Blue Jays. This year has been no different: In two starts against the Yankees in 2023, the righty has allowed just three runs (two earned) with a whopping 21 strikeouts over 14 innings. If he has his good splitter back tonight, he could cruise against a New York team that’s struggled against righties all year.
King has been a revelation since injuries thrust him into the Yankees rotation late last month — initially an emergency option, he’s been so good that New York has let him slowly build up his pitch count over the last few weeks, to the point where he’s now nearly at a full starter’s workload. The righty’s stuff has translated well as a starter, as he’s yet to allow more than one earned run in his last four starts and has racked up 17 Ks over his last 9.2 innings. He most recently went 4.2 innings against the Red Sox at Fenway Park, surrendering one run on six hits while striking out eight and throwing 87 pitches.
We saw eight runs scored in Tuesday’s series opener, but I think this number is too high tonight. The Yankees have yet to prove that they can do anything at all against Gausman, and if he goes his usual six or seven innings with just one or two runs allowed, King is more than good enough to hold up his end of the bargain and make sure this under cashes.
Pick: Under 7.5
Toronto has won four in a row, and they more or less buried New York’s faint postseason chances in Tuesday’s win. They also have the far more accomplished starter on the mound tonight, and I think they get yet another win in a relatively tight, low-scoring game.
Pick: Blue Jays -120