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Yankees Closing in on Astros as 2018 World Series Favorites

Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez hits a deep home run.
Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez is batting .202 with nine homers and 29 RBI. Photo by Arturo Pardavila III (Flickr) [CC License].
  • New York’s odds to win the World Series have shortened after taking two of three against the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium
  • Will Yankees second baseman Gleyber Torres turn into a top ten talent?
  • Can the Red Sox take control of the AL East when Dustin Pedroia returns?

It may just be May 11th, but the Yankees are already in mid-season form. New York has won 17 of its last 19 games and hasn’t lost a series since the second week of April.

It’s the franchise’s best start in 15 years and they’ve done it against the crème de la crème of the American League, having played 24 of their 37 games against teams that are .500 or better. The Yankees have already swept the Rays, Twins, Angels, and Indians, and recently won two out of three against the Red Sox.

Vegas has taken note of the Yankees’ hot streak and has given the Bronx Bombers a big bump. The team’s average odds to win the 2018 World Series have improved from +710 on April 30th to +540 on May 11th across a number of top online betting sites. The Yankees are currently available as short as +450 at MyBookie and as long as +650 at Bovada.

New York is tied for first place in the AL East and is primed to surge ahead soon thanks to a soft schedule featuring games against the A’s, Royals, and Rangers. Those three squads have a combined winning percentage of .398 and are all expected to be sellers at the trade deadline.

The secret to the Yankees’ success has been outrageously good offense. New York leads the Majors in runs and RBI, and is in the top five in total bases, home runs, walks, on base percentage, slugging percentage, OPS, and run differential.

Leading the charge has been Aaron Judge, who’s hitting .311 with nine home runs and 28 RBI. The 2017 AL Rookie of the Year has cut down on his prodigious strikeout rate from a season ago by improving his plate discipline and making better adjustments within his at bats.

Gleyber Torres recently became the youngest Yankee to hit a walk-off home run since Mickey Mantle.

The Yankees have also gotten unexpected contributions from Gleyber Torres, who recently became the youngest Yankee to hit a walk-off home run since Mickey Mantle. The 21-year-old second baseman is batting .344 with two home runs and 11 RBI since being called up from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on April 22nd. New York loves his upside and believes he could be a top ten talent within a few years.

Everyone knew New York would be able to hit coming into the 2018 season, but what makes this iteration of the Yankees so special is when they’re putting the bat on the ball.

New York is hitting .289 with runners in scoring position and leads the Majors with a .314 batting average in late game situations with the score close. Simply put, these guys are clutch.

The Yankees’ success has come at the expense of the Red Sox, whose average World Series odds dropped from +630 on April 30th to +660 on May 11th across numerous online betting sites.

The Red Sox haven’t been bad, they just haven’t been as good as the Yankees. Boston has already lost four games since the beginning of May and gave up 16 runs during their three-game series in the Bronx.

Boston has been without second baseman Dustin Pedroia all season long and recently lost the services of David Price, who was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome.

The former Cy Young winner has insisted his condition isn’t due to excessive video game playing, as many have suggested, but has promised to stop playing Fortnite until the swelling reduces in his left thumb and index finger.

The Yankees and Red Sox aren’t the only teams whose odds have changed. Check out our 2018 World Series Odds Tracker to see how the odds of all 30 teams fluctuate as the season unfolds.

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Ryan Murphy began his love affair with sports journalism at the age of nine when he wrote his first article about his little league baseball team. He has since authored his own column for Fox Sports, and now serves as SBD’s resident NBA and MLB expert.