The Kansas City Royals and New York Yankees square off on Saturday with first pitch set for 2:05 p.m. ET. The game takes place at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York and will only be available on local TV or through an MLB.tv subscription. Jonathan Heasley (1-5, 5.50 ERA) will get the start for the Royals while the Yankees will counter with Nestor Cortes (8-3, 2.48 ERA) on the mound.
Kansas City (39-61) sits in last place in the AL Central and is riding a four-game skid heading into the midpoint of the series. After a close 1-0 loss in the series opener by way of an Aaron Judge walk-off home run, Kansas City registered back-to-back losses after an implosion in the eighth inning on Friday night. Despite holding a 5-3 lead heading into the eighth, the Royals allowed eight runs in the inning including a grand slam from Judge. An 11-5 loss keeps them in an 0-2 deficit midway through the series.
New York (68-33) had been the best team in baseball for a majority of the season, but a slight slump through July has relinquished that title to the Los Angeles Dodgers based on record. The Yankees just might be rekindling the magic after going up 2-0 on the Royals in their current series with their eyes on the sweep. Judge continues to play his way into a big payday after his grand slam on Friday increased his total home runs to 41 this season. That total is an MLB-best this season and has him arguably as the frontrunner for the AL MVP.
Royals vs. Yankees
Pitchers: Jonathan Heasley vs. Nestor Cortes
First pitch: 2:05 p.m. ET
Royals local broadcast: Bally Sports Kansas City
Yankees local broadcast: YES Network
Live stream: MLB.tv (subscription)
Odds, picks & predictions
Run Line: Yankees -1.5 (-155)
Run total: 9
Moneyline odds: Royals +265, Yankees -320
Moneyline pick: Yankees -320
The odds are practically begging everyone to take the Royals as the overwhelming underdogs in this one. But it’s hard not to look at the way these two teams have been playing. The Royals are riding a four-game losing streak and rank 27th in team ERA (4.66). New York has too much firepower with its bats, which is led by Judge going on a tear. Make it a 3-0 series lead for the Yankees on Saturday.
Player prop pick: Anthony Rizzo over 1.5 total bases (+110)
Rizzo fairs better against righties and is slashing .229/.352/.492 this season. Heasley is also making his return from IL on Saturday after landing on the list due to shoulder tendinitis. Rizzo just went 2-4 at the plate with a homer in Friday’s win and should keep the rhythm going on Saturday against Heasley, who could very well be rusty in his return.
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