The New York Yankees should be able to ride a hot pitcher to victory when they host the Chicago White Sox on Saturday. Hiroki Kuroda is finally settling in with the Yankees; after a sluggish start, the starter has gone 3-1 with a 2.38 ERA in five starts so far in June. Even accounting for his bad opening, Kuroda has clearly felt comfortable throwing at home, where he’s posted a 5-3 record and a 2.91 ERA (compared to 2-4 with a 4.01 ERA on the road). The Yankees as a whole have been on a great run in June, carrying a .760 winning ratio coming into this weekend series.
The White Sox hurler Jake Peavy has been excellent this year, with a 6-4 record and a 2.84 ERA, but it’s time to start worrying about his durability. Due to injury, Peavy hasn’t started more than 18 games in a season since 2008. This will be his sixteenth start in 2012. In his last game, he gave up a season-high 10 hits against the weak-hitting Minnesota Twins. The Yanks, remember, are the American League’s fourth-best run-producing side. Opt for New York at 1.75. Despite their talents, Chicago (on at 2.08) won’t have enough in this one.
The Houston Astros are well-placed to pick up a rare road victory against the Chicago Cubs. Houston starter J.A. Happ is currently on a roll: in his past two outings he’s gone 2-0 with a 2.08 ERA. Happ, who lives in Chicago in the off-season, will be comfortable pitching there. The sample size is very small, but he pitched well in his only other outing at Wrigley Field, going six innings and allowing just two runs.
As for the Cubs, starter Matt Garza has been solid, but has a history of struggling against the Astros. He’s 0-3 lifetime versus Houston and when the two clubs met on May 21, he was slammed for seven runs on five hits, lasting just three innings. Pick the Astros at 2.35 instead of Chicago at 1.60.