The Yankees and Rays wrap up their crucial three-game series on Wednesday and, with the American League East still up for grabs, it couldn’t be bigger. Live betting is available for this Bodog MLB odds event.
Phil Hughes (16-7, 4.26 ERA) will take the ball for New York. The right-hander was a disaster in his last start, getting pulled after allowing six runs in just six innings of work; it led to a 7-3 loss in Toronto. Hughes has actually made an appearance since then, as he worked a scoreless inning of relief in a 13-inning loss to the Rangers on Friday.
Hughes hasn’t faced Tampa Bay since the end of July, when he lost after allowing three runs through six innings. It was the youngster’s only start of the season against the Rays, dropping him to 2-2 with a 4.29 ERA in eight appearances (three starts). Hughes has been pretty rough since the All-Star break, going 5-5 with a 5.37 ERA in 10 starts and 11 appearances; he was 11-2 with a 3.65 ERA before the break.
The Rays will counter with James Shields (13-12, 4.98 ERA). Shields hasn’t had his best stuff over the past few weeks; he was lit up for five runs (four earned) in just five innings of work against Toronto last week. That gives him 10 earned runs allowed in his last 9.1 innings pitched.
Shields, a righty, dominated the Yankees the last time they met. He threw 7.1 scoreless innings and allowed just four hits in the 3-0 Rays victory. Shields has actually had New York’s number all year, going 2-0 with a sterling 2.77 ERA in four starts. That has reversed the trend of struggles against the Bronx Bombers during his career; Shields is 3-7 with a 4.95 ERA in 13 lifetime starts against New York.
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