Alex Rodriguez is back in the lineup for the New York Yankees this week, but they'll be in tough this weekend as they look to pay out against a team that has had their number on the MLB betting lines over the past couple of seasons -- the Detroit Tigers.
The Yankees have managed to win just one of their past seven games against the Tigers, and that was the last meeting of the two teams back on April 7. Prior to that, Detroit had won six straight games against New York, and overall the Tigers are 7-3 for their supporters on the baseball odds in their last 10 games against the Yankees.
And New York can't afford to struggle against Detroit this weekend, already struggling against everyone else lately. It's the kind of trend that fans of sports betting focus on during the dog days of August.
Heading into Wednesday's action the Yankees have lost three games in a row and seven of their past 10 contests, and they're now 10.5 games back of the Boston Red Sox in the AL East division standings.
Detroit enters play on Wednesday five games up on the Cleveland Indians in the AL Central, and they'll begin their weekend series at Yankee Stadium on Friday night. Total bettors have watched the OVER go 6-3-1 in the past 10 games between the Yankees and Tigers, and 2-0-1 in their three-game series at the start of April.
New York's struggles have dropped them down to 22/1 on the odds to win the American League Pennant at the sportsbooks, with the Tigers leading the way on that list at 3/1 odds. Sportsbooks have also been offering A-Rod odds on whether his suspension will be reduced and whether or not he will play in 2014.
Tampa Bay is then pegged at 4/1 odds to claim the AL Pennant this year, and they'll be on the road this weekend for a series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Rays enter Wednesday 1.5 games behind Boston in the AL East.
Despite those standings, however, the Red Sox are third at 9/2 odds to win the AL Pennant at the sportsbooks, putting them just ahead of the Athletics (19/4), Rangers (7/1), and Orioles (17/2). Boston has a series against the Royals in Kansas City this weekend, with the Red Sox losing two of their three meetings back in late April.
Overall Boston is just 5-5 in its past 10 games against Kansas City, with the OVER/UNDER going 5-5 for totals bettors at the sportsbooks in those 10 contests.
Other action around the American League this weekend includes Minnesota at the White Sox, the Angels at Cleveland, Oakland at Toronto, and Texas at Houston, with Baltimore playing an interleague series against San Francisco. Early next week the Yankees will host the Angels while the White Sox get a visit from the Tigers.