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Yankees and Mets all square on odds going into Subway Series

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The New York Mets and New York Yankees, each of whom can stand to get a sweep to sustain their Wild Card hopes, meet this week in their annual Subway Series. Each team is listed at -110 on the moneyline at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com for Monday’s opener.

The Mets come into the four-game split series – Monday and Tuesday at Citi Field, then a move to the Bronx for Wednesday and Thursday – with slightly more forward momentum than the Yankees, although that says little.

The Mets are just 7-9 since the All-Star Break, but they weren’t sellers at the non-waiver trade deadline like the Yankees, who off-loaded two-thirds of the front of their bullpen by trading Aroldis Chapman to the Chicago Cubs and flipping Andrew Miller to the Cleveland Indians for prospects.

The Yankees, who will not face Mets ace Noah Syndergaard this week, have won 11 of the teams’ last 20 matchups according to the OddsShark MLB Database. The total has gone over nine times.

The Mets have fifth starter Logan Verrett against veteran Yankees LHP CC Sabathia in the pitching matchup for Monday. Verrett has been in his element in his home ballpark, with a 3.29 ERA at Citi compared to an ugly 5.00 on the road. The Mets are 2-3 in Verrett’s home starts, but two of the losses came against aces Max Scherzer and Adam Wainwright.

Sabathia’s teams are 5-5 in his last 10 road starts in August. The Mets are 13-13 against lefty starters.

All-star right-hander Jacob deGrom, who works for the Mets on Tuesday, has limited hitters to a .589 OPS (on-base-plus-slugging) in his 10 home starts. However, Yankees RHP Masahiro Tanaka has been an excellent road starter, with a 1.94 ERA and a .566 OPS allowed. Tanaka has a 1.20 ERA in two career starts against the Mets.

The Mets are slated to start LHP Steven Matz at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday. The Mets are 3-7 in Matz’s last 10 starts, and the total has gone under eight times. However, the Yankees are 14-19 against lefty starters.

Inconsistent Ivan Nova is scheduled to start for the Yankees. Nova has pitched one-run ball in three of his last five starts, but he has allowed nine home runs and issued 16 bases on balls in 52.2 innings at the Stadium this season. That combination can be lethal for a pitcher.

In the finale on Thursday, the Mets’ ageless RHP Bartolo Colon will return to one of his former home parks. One pattern of note with Colon is that the total has gone over in nine of his last 10 road starts in August. His teams are 5-5 in those matchups.

The Yankees’ Nathan Eovaldi has had a run of three decent starts since going back in the rotation, but his ratio of just 11 strikeouts against six walks over his last 18 innings is not a good omen.

Interleague play has been relatively kind to the Mets. They are 6-4; the Yankees are 5-8.

Cubs overwhelming favorite for 2017 World Series futures

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No team has won back-to-back World Series since the turn of the millennium, but the Chicago Cubs are favored to do so after ending their 108-year drought earlier this month.

The Cubs opened 2016 at the top of the board and delivered by winning three elimination games in a row to defeat the Cleveland Indians. The Cubs will return almost all of their nucleus except for free-agent closer Aroldis Chapman, so it is no surprise that Chicago is at the top of the 2017 World Series odds at +350 at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

With utilityman Javier Baez, 3B Kris Bryant, 1B Anthony Rizzo, SS Addison Russell and LF Kyle Schwarber all in their peak years, Chicago is well set up to be postseason regulars for years on end.

Only the 1998-2000 New York Yankees have gone back-to-back during the 22-season postseason history of the wild-card era. The afterglow of the Cubs winning has probably inflated the prices for other contenders. The Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers are each listed at +900.

The Red Sox will have five everyday players who will age 28 or younger next season and are rumored to be the landing spot for free-agent DH Edwin Encarnacion, who has turned down a qualifying offer from the rival Toronto Blue Jays.

The Dodgers won the NL West last season even though ace LHP Clayton Kershaw missed a third of the season, so clearly their ceiling could be even higher than last season’s 91 wins.

The Washington Nationals are listed at +1200, on the presumption that they might eventually have a bullpen to buttress the star power of RF Bryce Harper and RHP Max Scherzer.

Washington’s prospectus will change if they go against their emphasis on starting pitching and get in on the bidding war for one of the four prized free-agent closers – Chapman, Greg Holland, Kenley Jansen or Mark Melancon.

Despite coming within one run of winning the World Series, Cleveland is listed at +1400 along with Toronto, the New York Mets and the San Francisco Giants.

It seems strange to see the New York Yankees well down the board at +2500, but the Yankees are still in belt-tightening mode and are unlikely to add more payroll.

Best moments from the Chicago Cubs World Series parade

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It’s time.

Chicago Cubs fans waited for more than 100 years to celebrate bringing a title back to Wrigley Field and they wasted no time securing a spot to watch the parade.

Don’t get mad Blackhawks fans, but this was the biggest parade that the city of Chicago has seen since Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

And it lived up to expectations.

Even Grant Park, where the Cubs will be ending their parade, was packed before the parade started.

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Other Cubs fans took to the great outdoors to conduct their parade.

Chicago’s well known for dying its river green on St. Patrick’s Day, but today, it’s blue.

In an incredible twist of irony, Chicago Public schools were scheduled to be closed on Nov. 4th anyway for a school improvement day, but some schools in the Chicagoland area were still given the opportunity to participate in the festivities thanks to a really cool principal.

On the buses, Anthony Rizzo was amped, while team grandpa David Ross discovered how to take a pretty well done selfie.

(Update: Kris Bryant is still wearing the belt.)

Travis Wood just got a little too excited.

Veteran pitcher Jon Lester has been through enough World Series parades to know that when they tell you to sit, there’s probably a good reason.

Walter Payton’s son, Jarrett, found a warm (and rather spacious) spot to watch the parade.

The intro of the day goes to play-by-play man Pat Hughes, who summed up exactly what all Cubs fans are thinking.

“Did anybody go to work today? Did anybody go to school today? Your teachers and bosses are all here, too.”

Theo Epstein reflected on the Cubs’ season and what this World Series meant to the team in an emotional speech at Grant Park. He mentioned that the rain delay during Game 7 was a big deal for the squad, and after introducing Joe Maddon, he relayed that he’s going to continue on his bender.

The Cubs manager also wore a “We Did Not Suck” shirt.

Miguel Montero and Jon Lester kept it short and sweet. Montero just said, “We Are Good!” and Lester called for more cheers for David Ross.

MVP Ben Zobrist spoke a bit longer, giving credit to Anthony Rizzo for playing Rocky movies all week long and David Ross for inspiring the team when the Cubs were down 3-1.

Anthony Rizzo gave credit to nearly every person associated with the Cubs, even giving the final out to owner Tom Ricketts. The most touching moment of the speeches was when the first baseman got emotional when introducing catcher David Ross.

Grandpa Ross revved up the crowd with a major CHICAGO, thanked his family, and then did the most millennial thing of all time.

He took a selfie with the crowd.

We made it through nearly the entire parade before we found the Cubs’ J.R. Smith: Travis Wood, who lost his shirt as Brett Eldredge closed out the event with a rousing rendition of “Go Cubs Go”.

For a celebration 108 years in the making, a turnout of 5 million people is tremendous.

Enjoy it, Chicago.