I wrote earlier this week that Mike Trout being ruled out 6-8 weeks due to a torn ligament in his left thumb would completely shift the AL MVP odds and that I was waiting for a sportsbook to re-post them. Bovada has done so and Trout, previously the heavy betting favorite, isn't even an option. I could see him missing six weeks and still winning it if he could lift the Angels to the playoffs with huge numbers, but they stink and will be well below .500 when Trout returns. Your new favorite is Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge. I have not seen AL Rookie of the Year odds yet, but I guarantee you that Judge is a massive favorite on that prop because he's also a -150 leader on the new MVP odds. Can't say I disagree at this point. He's trying to join Fred Lynn (1975) and Ichiro Suzuki (2001) as the only players in MLB history to win Rookie of the Year and MVP in the same season. The only other players under +1000 for MVP are Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts (+700), who was second in the 2016 voting, Astros second baseman Jose Altuve (+900), third in 2016, and Houston shortstop Carlos Correa (+900), the 2015 AL Rookie of the Year. Altuve and Correa could perhaps split the vote.
Yankees at Blue Jays ( -122, 9 )
First game of the day at 1:07 p.m. ET and on the MLB Network. That the Yankees are in first place with ace Masahiro Tanaka having a terrible season and the team having to use rookie left-hander Jordan Montgomery in the No. 5 spot all year is a credit to Manager Joe Girardi and that Judge-led lineup. There's no question the Bombers will trade for pitching at some point this year. They have lost the past four starts by Montgomery (2-4, 4.11). He lasted just 4.1 innings last time out in Baltimore as he already was at 100 pitches. It's Montgomery's first career look at Toronto. The Jays go with converted reliever Joe Biagini (1-3, 3.64), who has fared well enough in the rotation to perhaps keep his spot even when the Jays are fully healthy there. He went a career-high 95 pitches last time out and allowed two runs over six but lost vs. Texas. Biagini pitched 1.2 innings of relief vs. the Yankees on May 3 and allowed three runs. Judge is 1-for-1 off him with a walk.
Key trends: The Yankees are 0-4 in Montgomery's past four. The Jays are 2-8 in their past 10 vs. a lefty. The "over/under" is 5-2 in Toronto's previous seven vs. a southpaw.
Early lean: Jays and over.
Indians at Royals (+148, 8.5)
A 2:15 p.m. ET first pitch. Cleveland's ace was supposed to be former Cy Young winner Corey Kluber, but it clearly has been Carlos Carrasco thus far and he's +2200 on the updated Cy Young odds. Carrasco (5-2, 2.89) is fourth in the AL with a WHIP of 0.92, and the Tribe have won his past five. He beat the A's last time out in allowing two runs and four hits over seven. No team has gotten seven hits off him yet. He is 7-5 with a 3.40 ERA in his career against Kansas City. Alex Gordon has two homers off him but just two other hits and 12 strikeouts in 26 at-bats. The Royals' Jason Hammel (1-6, 6.18) could be in danger of losing his spot as the Royals have won just once in his 10 outings. His ERA among qualified starters is 89th . Hammel's lone win was May 5 vs. Cleveland, allowing one run in six. Edwin Encarnacion is 8-for-21 against him with four homers.
Key trends: The Indians are 7-1 in Carrasco's past eight in Kansas City. The under is 12-3 in his past 15 on the road. The under is 3-0-1 in Hammel's past four vs. teams with a winning record.
Early lean: Indians on runline (-105) and under.
Nationals at A's (+123, 8.5)
Washington adds the DH again for this interleague matchup, but it won't be Bryce Harper as he sits out the finale of his three-game suspension for that brawl early this week. Harper, incidentally, is the even-money favorite at Bovada to win his second NL MVP Award. Teammate Ryan Zimmerman, having his best season, is +700. The Nats go with Joe Ross (2-1, 6.18), who grew up in the Oakland area. He has made two starts since being demoted to Triple-A. The first one was fantastic. But last time out, he was knocked around for 12 hits and five runs in four innings by San Diego. Ross has never faced his hometown team, but Khris Davis is 1-for-3 with a dinger off him. Oakland's Daniel Mengden (0-1, 13.50) made his season debut last Thursday in Cleveland and gave up five runs, three homers, in 3.1 innings. It's his first-ever look at Washington.
Key trends: The Nats are 4-1 in Ross' past five vs. teams with a winning record. The A's are 1-7 in Mengden's past eight. The over is 6-0-1 in Ross' past seven.
Early lean: Nationals and over.
Red Sox at Orioles (+111, 9)
Baltimore has placed catcher Welington Castillo on the disabled list after suffering a testicular injury earlier this week. I normally look up what happened and how long a guy is out, but I truly don't want to know in this case. It's Castillo's second stint of the year on the DL. He's hitting a nice .317 with 17 RBIs in 29 games. Baltimore's Dylan Bundy is +2000 on the Cy Young odds. Bundy (6-3, 2.89) ended a three-start losing streak last time out by giving up two runs over seven against the Yankees. He is 2-1 with a 2.21 ERA this year in three starts vs. Boston. Betts is 5-for-17 against him with two homers. Red Sox lefty David Price makes his second start of the season. His velocity was good Monday at the White Sox as Price threw 88 pitches (5 IP, 3 ER). Price was 3-1 with a 3.71 ERA in five starts last year vs. the Birds. Manny Machado is 10-for-34 off him with three homers and six Ks.
Key trends: The Sox are 0-4 in Price's past four dating to last year. The Orioles are 6-1 in Bundy's past seven at home. The under is 4-0-1 in Bundy's past five vs. Boston.
Early lean: Orioles and under.
Twins at Angels (-121, 8)
Feel it's my duty to remind you that Albert Pujols could join the 600-HR club here if he doesn't Friday night. Twins outfielder Miguel Sano, having a breakout season, is +1000 to win the AL MVP. Minnesota's Ervin Santana is having his best season and he's a +1000 third-favorite behind Chris Sale (-150) and Dallas Keuchel (+500) to win the Cy Young. Santana (7-2, 1.75) has had two rough outings and the other nine have been quality. He held the powerful Astros to one earned run over seven innings last Thursday but took a no-decision despite leaving with a 7-2 lead. That game somehow ended up 16-8 Houston. Santana started his career with the Angels in 2005 and pitched there through 2012. Pujols is 3-for-12 off him with a homer. L.A.'s Matt Shoemaker (4-3, 4.26) was pushed back a day after struggling last time out vs. the Marlins. He is 1-1 with a 4.61 ERA in three career starts against the Twins. Sano is 0-for-1 against Shoemaker
Key trends: The Twins are 4-0 in Santana's past four on the road. The Halos are 2-5 in Shoemaker's past seven on Saturday. The under is 11-3-1 in Santana's past 15 overall.
Early lean: Twins and under.
Doc's Sports MLB handicapping team is offering $60 worth of member's baseball picks absolutely free - no obligation, no sales people - Claim your free MLB picks here now. Also, for a limited time only get three MLB handicappers for the price of one. Click here for details . Get free MLB picks daily at Doc's Sports baseball predictions page .
Read more articles by Alan Matthews
Most Recent Baseball Handicapping
- 2020 World Series Predictions with Expert Analysis
- Free MLB Picks Thursday 10/1/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free MLB Picks Wednesday 9/30/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free MLB Picks Tuesday 9/29/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free MLB Picks Saturday 9/26/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free MLB Picks Friday 9/25/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free MLB Picks Thursday 9/24/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free MLB Picks Wednesday 9/23/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free MLB Picks Tuesday 9/22/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free MLB Picks Saturday 9/19/2020 and Opening Line Report