The Kansas City Royals look to take the third game of the series on Thursday afternoon after splitting the first two with New York. The Yankees (39-34), third place in the American League East, are winners of three of the past four games and can make things quite interesting in the AL playoff picture with a strong finish to the season. Kansas City (33-39) also comes in third in its division, but the chances of a playoff run are significantly lower for a young team with its eyes set on the future.
First pitch from the Yankee Stadium in New York is set for 1:05 p.m. ET. New York is a -195 favorite (risk $195 to win $100) on the money line in the latest Yankees vs. Royals odds from William Hill Sportsbook, while the over-under for total runs scored is 9.5. Before making any Royals vs. Yankees picks, check out the latest MLB predictions and betting advice 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, returning more than $1,400 on its top-rated money-line and run-line MLB picks. It's off to a sizzling start in 2021, going 100-74 on top-rated MLB money-line picks through 12 weeks, returning over $1,200. Anyone following it has seen huge returns.
- Royals vs. Yankees money line: New York -195, Kansas City +177
- Royals vs. Yankees run line: Yankees -1.5 (-105)
- Royals vs. Yankees over-under: 9.5 runs
- KC: The Royals are 2-8 in their last 10 games with an over-under set between 9.5-10.5 runs.
- NYY: The Yankees are 8-2 in their last 10 games with an over-under set between 9.5-10.5 runs.
Why you should back the Yankees
It has been quite some time since New York's lineup was healthy and firing on all cylinders, but the Yankees bring a stacked lineup featuring Aaron Judge, DJ LeMahieu, a red-hot Gary Sanchez and Giancarlo Stanton, and Luke Voit -- who homered in his first appearance after an extended stay on the injured list. That is a lot of firepower for any pitcher to handle.
And Kansas City's Thursday starter, Brad Keller, has struggled to even handle the anemic offense of the Detroit Tigers lately. Keller's peripherals suggested that he was pitching way over his head when he posted a 2.47 ERA in the shortened 2020 season, and regression has hit him hard in 2021. His ERA through 15 starts sits at 6.34, and Keller has allowed at least five runs in each of his past three starts.
Why you should back the Royals
There's a reason the total is set for nearly 10 runs in this one -- the Royals aren't the only team with a suspect pitcher on the mound. New York's Jameson Taillon has also crashed back down to Earth in 2021. His ERA sits at 5.59 on the year, and it is an unsightly 7.04 in his four June starts. Taillon has pitched into the sixth inning in just one of his 13 starts, and it would be no surprise to see him struggle once again against a Royals offense that seems to have found its footing over the past few games.
The Royals also have a tendency to be undervalued by oddsmakers, as evidenced by their return of +202 units when listed as road underdogs this season. Kansas City is listed as a massive road underdog once again, even though the Royals are facing an underperforming starting pitcher.
How to make Royals vs. Yankees picks
SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, as the teams combine for 10.4 runs in the simulations, and it also says one side of the money line has all the value. You can only see the pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Royals 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, all from the advanced model off to a hot start in 2021.