Robert Hanashiro / USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees get a chance to immediately size up the competition in the American League East when they host the Toronto Blue Jays on Thursday afternoon to get the 2021 MLB Opening Day schedule underway. New York will play its first 15 games against division foes, including a pair of three-game sets against the Blue Jays. The Yankees send ace Gerrit Cole to the mound for the 1:05 p.m. ET matchup, while Toronto counters with left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu.

New York is the -177 favorite (risk $177 to win $100) on the money line at William Hill Sportsbook, while the over-under for runs scored is 7.5 in the latest Blue Jays vs. Yankees odds. Before making any Yankees vs. Blue Jays picks, check out the latest 2021 MLB Opening Day predictions from the SportsLine Projection Model.

This model, which simulates every pitch of every game 10,000 times, had a banner 2019 season, the league's last full schedule. The model returned more than $1,400 on its top-rated money-line and run-line MLB picks, and anyone who followed it saw huge rewards.

Now, the model has dialed in on Yankees vs. Blue Jays. You can visit SportsLine now to see the picks. Here are the MLB lines and trends for Blue Jays vs. Yankees:

  • Blue Jays vs. Yankees money line: New York -177, Toronto +162
  • Blue Jays vs. Yankees run line: New York -1.5
  • Blue Jays vs. Yankees over-under: 7.5 runs
  • TOR: The Blue Jays were fourth in the AL with a .255 batting average in 2020
  • NYY: The Yankees were 22-9 at home last year

Why you should back the Yankees

First baseman Luke Voit (meniscus), who led the majors with 22 homers last year, will miss a few weeks but New York can absorb his loss if sluggers Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton stay healthy. Stanton appeared in only 41 regular-season games over the past two years but slammed six homers in seven postseason games last year. Shortstop Gleyber Torres went from 38 homers in 2019 to only three in 2020, but he went deep five times in spring training.

Leadoff hitter DJ LeMahieu is the perfect table-setter for New York's potent lineup, batting a major league-best .364 last season. Cole posted a 7-3 record and 2.84 ERA in his first season in New York and also won a pair of postseason starts. He handled the Blue Jays with ease in back-to-back starts in September, giving up one run over seven innings in each outing while striking out a combined 15 batters.

Why you should back the Blue Jays

Toronto expects to contend in the AL East due to a glut of young talent headed by the trio of a slimmed-down Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio. Guerrero, who reportedly dropped 40 pounds in the offseason, batted .421 with a pair of home runs and 10 RBIs during the exhibition season. The Blue Jays signed outfielder George Springer to a six-year, $150 million contract, but his availability is in doubt due to a left oblique strain.

Teoscar Hernandez provides a power bat in the middle of the lineup, swatting 16 home runs in the 2020 shortened season after belting 26 in 2019. Infielder Marcus Semien also was signed as a free agent but Toronto's biggest question mark is the pitching staff. Ryu is a capable top-of-the rotation starter, going 5-2 with a 2.69 ERA last year and capping the regular season by limiting New York to five hits over seven scoreless innings.

How to make Blue Jays vs. Yankees picks

SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, as the simulations say Cole and Scherzer each allow more than two earned runs, and it also says one side of the money line has the value. You can only see the pick at SportsLine

So who wins Blue Jays vs. Yankees? And which side of the money line has all the value? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the money line to jump on Thursday, all from the advanced model that returned more than $1,400 in 2019.