Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#1913 New York Yankees vs.
#1914 Baltimore Orioles
Thursday, September 16, 2021 at 5:05pm EDT
Written by Jordy

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The Baltimore Orioles hope to avoid the clean sweep in Thursday’s run-in with the visiting New York Yankees. They fell in their fifth straight loss on Wednesday to a Yankees team that mustered only a one-point victory at the Camden Yards. It was by far the closest matchup the Orioles have experienced in their recent losing slump. Jordan Montgomery gets the nod to start at pitcher for the Yankees in the finale opposite of Baltimore’s Chris Ellis.

Yankees in desperation mode

Nothing will light a fire under a team faster than the thought of being left out of the playoff picture.

The Yankees are suddenly playing like there’s something at stake after potentially blowing their postseason hopes in a recent losing skid. They have essentially used the Orioles as a stepping stone back to the winning side of things, along with their ongoing hunt for a Wild Card spot.

So they clearly need to win this game.

Jordan Montgomery (3.71 ERA) looked terrible on the mound in his most recent outing against the New York Mets. However, he has played well enough against the Orioles throughout the season for the Yankees to have complete confidence in him taking care of business on Thursday. However, it must also be noted that Baltimore hasn’t been the disaster waiting to happen offensively at home this season. They have been competitive at the plate more often than not with a .253 batting average and .769 OPS.

Montgomery’s last trip to the Camden Yards was also a complete letdown with the 28-year-old lefty yielding five runs in only three innings of work.

But the Yankees should be able to make up for any struggles from Montgomery on the offensive end against an Orioles pitching rotation allowing the most home runs per game this season. There’s simply too much big-play opportunity to think the Yankees would wrap things up without a dramatic finale.

Orioles need another defensive stand

Things were competitive on Wednesday because the Orioles actually gave themselves a chance by playing good defense. Opposing teams are averaging a ridiculous 11 runs per game in their last five outings.

Yeah, good luck winning games when you’re bleeding runs to that degree.

They kept things respectable by holding the Yankees to only four runs in their second meeting of the series. Granted, they weren’t able to come through in the clutch offensively to actually win the game, but they were certainly in a position to pull away with the victory.

That should be the line of thinking ahead of Thursday’s matchup. Jordan Montgomery struggled in his last visit to the Camden Yards, and the Orioles are clearly hitting the ball more effectively at home than they have been on the road. They could be without a pair of power hitters with both Trey Mancini and Pedro Severino both being listed as questionable for the game.

But it all starts with how the team performs defensively.

Baltimore’s pitching rotation is allowing the most hits per game (9.37) and the fourth-least strikeouts. There simply isn’t a lot of playmaking happening on the defensive side of things for the Birds. If that doesn’t change in the finale, it’ll be another lopsided loss to close out the series.

Chris Ellis is slated to toe the rubber as the starting pitcher for the Orioles in the finale with a 2.08 ERA and only 21.2 innings under his belt. So he doesn’t have a ton of experience as a starter. However, that was also the case in his last head-to-head meeting with the Yankees, and he blanked them for five straight innings at Yankee Stadium.

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The Yankees need this game.

It’s going to be a dog fight to the finish for the Wild Card in the American League. After an ugly start to the month of September, the Yankees have put themselves in the unfortunate position of having to play catch-up, and it all starts with sweeping the Orioles on Thursday.

Sure, Chris Ellis looked sensational against the Yankees in his previous meeting with the team, but his chances of running it back with another gem pitching performance is slim to none. Have you seen the runs the Orioles are giving up as of late?

They have allowed double-digit runs in three of their last five games. There isn’t a team in the league bleeding runs like Baltimore right now, especially at the Camden Yards. Opponents are averaging 6.58 runs per game against them when they’re the home team this season.

And their offensive consistency is pretty much non-existent.

Jordan Montgomery is a tough out in a game like this one—a finale against a desperate Yankees team that needs the win. The final scoring line from this game won’t look pretty—at all. I’m rolling with the Yankees in this one.

Prediction: New York Yankees (-1.5)

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It’s hard to put much faith in a team allowing an average of 13.33 runs in their last three games. The Yankees will have an opportunity to take whatever they want at the plate on Thursday against the Orioles. Chris Ellis doesn’t have a ton of starting experience, and he’ll be faced with the herculean task of fending off a Yankees offense that’s still dangerous when their backs are against the wall. The defensive struggles for the Orioles will only lead to more trouble in the finale with opposing teams slashing .384/.466/.804 against them in their last three games. Give me the over in this one.

Prediction: Over (10)

Written By Jordy McElroy , "Jordy"

Born in Germany and raised in the beautiful state of Tennessee, Jordy McElroy is a storyteller of sports, a sports betting enthusiast, and a semi-deep thinker. Being a New England Patriots fan means he's a six-time Super Bowl winner as well, which means you'd have to be a fool to ignore his advice. Prior to joining our team here at Winners & Whiners, Jordy’s work appeared on, FOX Sports, Bleacher Report, USA TODAY, and There are no beaches where he comes from -- just rolling hills, green valleys, and all the Sun Drop you can drink.