With the postponement of Game 5 yesterday, there have been some changes to our recommended bets. The Yankees will modify their rotation and go with Nester Cortez on short rest, while after some deliberation, the Guardians will go with Aaron Civale. There was some discussion about whether the Guardians would turn to Shane Bieber, however, Guardians manager Terry Francona has made it clear that he does not want to use Bieber on short rest. Although Bieber will not be starting on Tuesday, it is definitely possible that he pitches a minimum of one inning, and likely more, out of the bullpen
For Game 5, the Yankees are anywhere from -160 to -170 to win the series, and the Guardians were about +145. The Guardians have a definitive bullpen advantage in this game and everyone should be rested with the day off, so if the game is tied or close late, that will bode well for the Guardians.
The Yankees will likely need to get runs early to win the game, and if Civale can give the Guardians three or four scoreless innings, the advantage should move to the Guardians. Given Cortez’s struggles in Game 2 the series, along with the fact that he is pitching on short rest, the Yankees need a huge start out of him. While the opening line might be slightly off, this feels more like an opportunity for an in-game bet. If the game is tied after four innings, the Yankees will still likely be listed as the favorite, so we would recommend taking the Guardians as their bullpen and available starters will be significantly better than the Yankees.
Our experts also like the under on Cortez strikeouts, listed at 4.5. Cortez was able to only record 3 strikeouts in his last start, and that was on 13 days rest. Given he only has three days rest and is facing a team who just recently saw him, he is likely to have less than 4.5 strikeouts. Also consider the fact that it is a winner-take-all game where managers tend to have a shorter leash on pitchers, so Cortez is unlikely to throw more than five innings. Finally, the Guardians struck out the least of any team in MLB this year with a K rate of 18.5%. All signs are pointing to the under on 4.5 strikeouts.