MLB Friday Preview: Royals at Yankees, Mets at Cardinals

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April 19th, 2019

Kansas City Royals (7-12) at New York Yankees (8-10), 7:05 p.m. ET

Jakob Junis (1-1, 6.14 ERA) (KC) +155 / +1.5 runs (-120) / Over nine runs (-105) C.C. Sabathia (0-0, 0.00 ERA) (NYY) -170 / -1.5 runs (EVEN) / Under nine runs (-115)

The Royals bring their anemic offense into the Bronx. Jakob Junis, who's struggled in the early going, matches up with C.C. Sabathia, who was nearly flawless in his first start of 2019 (one hit allowed in five innings).

Junis' career splits against the Yankees are far from impressive. He's 1-2 with a 6.32 ERA in three starts (15 2/3 innings). If New York's sluggers can chase Junis early, they'll be able to tap into a bullpen that is ranked 28th by ERA at 6.06.

Sabathia faces an offense that is hitting just .218 on the road. Second baseman Whit Merrifield is 5-for-11 lifetime against Sabathia, but left fielder Alex Gordon, who has the most experience of any Royal against the southpaw from California, has just six hits in 35 at-bats (.171).

MLB Free Play: Yankees runline

New York Mets (10-8) at St. Louis Cardinals (10-8), 8:15 p.m. ET

Jason Vargas (1-0, 14.28 ERA) (NYM) +135 / +1.5 runs (-150) / Over nine runs (-115) Adam Wainwright (1-1, 3.94 ERA) (STL) -150 / -1.5 runs (+125) / Under nine runs (-105)

The Cardinals have a tremendous advantage over the Mets in the starting pitching department Friday night. Adam Wainwright, who took a no-hitter into the sixth inning against the Reds last time out, faces Jason Vargas, the weak link in the Mets' rotation.

Vargas will be fresh, if nothing else, as he recorded just one out on 36 pitches on April 13. Had Corey Oswalt pitched well in relief behind him that night, Vargas might have lost his spot in the rotation.

Since joining the Mets, Vargas is 8-9 (22 starts) with a 6.32 ERA. The streaking Yadier Molina is 5-for-11 all-time against the hurler from California, while Matt Carpenter is a perfect 5-for-5. In 53 at-bats against Mets pitching, Paul DeJong has an OPS of 1.279.

Wainwright, who is 2-0 with a 2.19 ERA against the Mets since 2017, will not need to have his best stuff to grab the victory here.

MLB Free Play: Cardinals runline