Yankees vs. Red Sox MLB Best Bet: Crawford to “Kut” Down Stroman

profile image of LTProfits
Starting pitcher Kutter Crawford #50 of the Boston Red Sox throws during the first inning of a game against the Philadelphia Phillies. Jaiden Tripi/Getty Images/AFP

MLB Pick: Red Sox ML (+131) at Bovada (visit our Bovada Review)

Bovada logo
Red Sox ML (+131)
Visit Site

We have a big 16-slate of Major League Baseball betting matchups for Sunday due to a make-up doubleheader. We are here with the three plays we feel have the most betting value at the current MLB odds.

These best bets are based mostly on our proprietary model. Our model favors a side in Sunday Night Baseball from Beantown with the Yankees visiting the Red Sox.

New York Yankees vs. Boston Red Sox

Sunday, June 16, 2024 – 07:10 PM ET at Fenway Park

Despite having the worse mainstream stats of these starting pitchers, Kutter Crawford of the Red Sox grades out Sabermetrically better than Marcus Stroman of the Yankees. Thus, Boston gets our upset call in Sunday Night Baseball.  

Unlucky Record

Crawford comes in at a very unlucky 2-6 despite a good 3.47 ERA and striking out nearly one batter per inning at 8.85/9. He has three pitches that he has thrown over 20% of the time, and all three rate highly in Stuff+ with the fastball at 106, cutter at 116 and slider at 113. That has led to an overall Stuff+ rating of 107, or 7% above average.

That “stuff” contradicts the 2-6 record, as well as the good strikeout rate being accompanied by a good soft/hard contact ratio of 18.8% / 25.2%. In short, Kutter is too good a pitcher for his luck to keep running this bad, and we think he will finally get some needed run support this evening.

Misleading ERA

The reason we expect more Boston scoring is because Stroman has been on the opposite side of the luck spectrum. He enters at 6-2 with a 2.82 ERA, but that excellent ERA is accompanied by a much duller xFIP of 4.57. And he has indeed scored highly in the Luck stats with an 83.3% strand rate and .243 BABIP allowed.

That strand rate would be unsustainable for anyone, but especially so for a non-strikeout pitcher. Marcus qualifies as such with a K-rate of only 6.55/9, and he has a very poor K/BB ratio with the walks at 3.84/9. To make matters worse, his swinging-strike rate of 8.1% is at its lowest point since 2015, so he is becoming much more hittable at now 33 years of age. All of which greatly belies the sub-3.00 ERA.

That makes this one of our favorite kind of matchups with opposite regressions expected from the starting pitchers. With Crawford being on the positive regression side, bet the Red Sox as home underdogs.

Predicted Score: Red Sox 5 – Yankees 3

MLB Pick: Red Sox ML (+131) at Bovada

Bovada logo
Red Sox ML (+131)
Visit Site

*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.