The New York Yankees finally start the 2021 season on Thursday, which means betting on baseball is officially back. Gerrit Cole will matchup with Hyun-Jin Ryu of the Toronto Blue Jays at 1:05 p.m. ET, kicking off the season with World Series aspirations in mind.
Let’s take a look at some of our favorite Yankees vs. Blue Jays player prop bets with picks and predictions for tonight’s game.
Yankees vs. Blue Jays line
Here is the current line for Yankees vs. Blue Jays on DraftKings Sportsbook.
Blue Jays: +1.5 (-143) // +150 // Over 8 (-105)
Yankees: -1.5 (+123) // -180 // Under 8 (-117)
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Yankees vs. Blue Jays player props
Gerrit Cole Over 1.5 Earned Runs (-135)
Gerrit Cole may be a popular pick for Cy Young this year but there is one major flaw in his game. He’s prone to giving up the long ball. The Toronto Blue Jays have some big bats in their lineup and the game is at Yankee Stadium, a notoriously hitter-friendly park. And in Cole’s first action of the regular season, his fastball command may not be as perfect as it will be in August.
So as much as it pains me to admit, Cole will probably give up at least a couple runs on Opening Day. It’s as simple as a poorly timed walk and a home run. Luckily, the Yankees lineup can do a lot of damage which brings us to our next bet.
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Gerrit Cole Under 8.5 Strikeouts
Much along the same lines of Cole not being in mid-season form for game one, the Yankees likely won’t let him work deep enough into the game to record nine strikeouts. The team’s success largely revolves around Cole being able to stay healthy. Should he go down, the Yankees rotation will be in dire straights.
So they’re not going to push him in the first game of the season. Personally, I would be shocked if they let him throw 100 pitches. And this Blue Jays lineup has the potential to do a lot of damage. It’s going to be tough for Cole to rack up nine strikeouts against this lineup and likely with a strict pitch count.
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Giancarlo Stanton to Homer (+200)
Giancarlo Stanton hits baseballs about as hard as humanly possible. The top exit velocities of the Statcast era is basically just him, Aaron Judge, and Gary Sanchez. The only thing Stanton hasn’t done for the Yankees over the last three years is manage to stay on the field. Well in 2021, he’ll be serving primarily as the designated hitter. And he’s looked pretty healthy so far this spring.
Picking him to homer off the lefty Ryu on Opening Day just feels right. 2021 will be the season that Stanton finally earns the praise he deserves from Yankee fans. And that starts with a home run on Opening Day.
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