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Cincinnati Reds vs. New York Yankees – Major League Baseball – Betting Preview and Prediction – July 18, 2014

Cincinnati Reds vs. New York Yankees – Major League Baseball – Betting Preview and Prediction – July 18, 2014

The second half of the season is about to start as teams prepare to battle as they jockey for positions in their bid to reach the MLB postseason.

The New York Yankees struggled towards the end of the first half as they entered the All-Star break with an even 47-47 record. They will have an opportunity to get their playoff push on the right track as they host the Cincinnati Reds (51-44) who are in a tight four-way battle for the NL Central title.

Read on for more analysis about this crucial interleague matchup. Meanwhile, you can check out another high-octane Friday game as MLB-best Oakland Athletics take on the AL East leaders the Baltimore Orioles.

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Cincinnati Reds vs. New York Yankees, Major League Baseball, Betting Preview and Prediction

Where: Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York

When:  Friday, July 18, 7:05 PM ET

Line: Cincinnati Reds (EVEN) vs. New York Yankees (-110); total: 8.5view all MLB lines

Betting on the Cincinnati Reds

The Cincinnati Reds finished the first half of the season strongly as they won seven of their last nine games to improve to 51-44. It was quite a turnaround for the Reds who at one point were six games below .500 at 22-28. Now they are just 1 ½ games back of NL Central leaders Milwaukee who sport a 53-43 record.

[sc:MLB240banner ]To start the second half, the Reds will give the ball to pitcher Mike Leake (7-7, 3.54 ERA) who has been solid for them so far this season. In his last outing against the Pirates, Leake pitched six innings, allowing four runs on nine hits and three walks as the Reds lost a 6-5 heartbreaker in extra innings.

It is the innings he has pitched, however, that has proven especially valuable to the Reds this season. He has already eaten up 127.0 innings this season for the Reds, second only to ace Johnny Cueto who has pitched 143 so far. Even with the huge inning count, he is third in the Reds rotation when it comes to ERA with a 3.54 clip.

It will be quite a test though for Leake as he will pitch in Yankee Stadium for the first time in his career. This isn’t his first time meeting the Yankees, though, as he lost a 4-2 decision to New York at home in 2011.

This is the first home game for the Reds since July 2 and their recent away form isn’t so good. They have lost their last three road games as they were swept by the Padres at Petco Park.

Betting on the New York Yankees

David Phelps

The All-Star break can’t come soon enough for the Yankees as injuries and defeats mounted for the 27-time World champions. The Yankees lost 10 of their last 16 games as they sputtered to a 47-47 record, five games back of the AL-East leading Baltimore Orioles.

Injuries have crippled the Yankees, particularly their starting rotation, which has lost C.C. Sabathia, Michael Pineda, Ivan Nova, and Masahiro Tanaka to injuries. That is the main reason why the Yankees are ranked 20th in the league when it comes to team ERA with a 3.95 mark.

One of the few bright spots for the Yankees has been David Phelps (3-4, 3.94 ERA) and he will be the one tasked to open the series against the Reds as they try to salvage their season.

Phelps has been impressive in his last six outings, going 2-0 in those starts. He allowed two earned runs or less in five of those six outings as he defeated the Athletics and the Blue Jays in that stretch. He needs to be at the top of his game against the Reds who are on fire offensively heading into the break, having scored 48 runs in their previous nine games.

The Yankees have struggled against the Reds at Yankee Stadium, losing three of their last five encounters. Their form at home has not been so great either, losing their last five home games, including a three-game sweep at the hands of the Tampa Bay Rays.

Writer’s Prediction

The Yankees will get a boost from the Yankee Stadium crowd as they will open their second half with a close win over the Cincinnati Reds. Create a betting account now and get into the action with an early highlight of baseball’s second half of the regular season.

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Written by Joel

Sports Betting Tips, News, and Analysis