Can Yankees Lose 8-Game Lead? A Look at Odds, History

Can Yankees Lose 8-Game Lead? A Look at Odds, History
Fact Checked by Pat McLoone

With the final game of the regular season Subway Series scheduled for Tuesday night in The Bronx, the New York Yankees are looking to even the season series against their cross-city rival, the New York Mets.

They also are trying to regain their footing after a rough stretch that even manager Aaron Boone has found frustrating.

Once an almost sure bet in New York sports betting, the Yankees have been having a horrific month of August. A team that entered the month 70-34 with a 12-game lead in the American League East has proceeded to lose 14 of its next 17 before winning its last two.

What once appeared to be an insurmountable lead has shrunk to eight games.

So, what are the odds in New York MLB betting the Yankees could lose the division? set out to look at those odds and what history tells us.


Odds, History Overwhelmingly with Yankees

Caesars Sportsbook New York certainly sees the Yankees as a huge favorite (-2500) to stay atop the East. They are followed by the Toronto Blue Jays (+1400) and Tampa Bay Rays (+6000).  The disparity of odds between the Jays and the Rays is odd, since the Rays are in second place (8 back) and Jays are in third (8.5 back).

The same confidence in the Yankees is shared on other NY betting apps.

No team has overcome an eight-game deficit to win the division in this century.


Leads Overcome as Late as Aug. 24

Here are the farthest teams have come from behind when trailing on Aug. 24 since 2002, with help from

Year, TeamGames BackCaughtWon By
2012 A’s6 gamesRangers1 game
2007 Phillies6 gamesMets1 game
2006 Twins6 gamesTigers1 game


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Some Epic Failures

The recent history indicates the Yankees can’t lose an eight-game lead but, of course, we have seen it before.

In fact, New York teams are famous for two of the most colossal comebacks.

Here are three historic rallies to take the division or pennant, including one each by the Yankees and Mets, with help from

1995 Seattle Mariners: In the strike-shortened 144-game season, the California Angels led the American League West Division by 10.5 games on Aug. 15. The Mariners were 12.5 games behind in third place.

The Angels went 14-28 down the stretch. Seattle went 27-16 to force a divisional tie, with the Mariners winning the one-game playoff, 9-1.

Seattle then defeated the Yankees in the divisional series before losing to the Cleveland Indians in the ALCS. 

1978 New York Yankees: New York trailed the Boston Red Sox in the AL East by a whopping 14 games in mid-July. 

Boston went two games over .500 in its last 72 games, but New York turned the whole division upside down. The Yankees went 51-21 over its last 72 to finish 99-63 and force an epic one-game playoff at Fenway Park. The legendary Bucky Dent home run happened and the Yankees advanced to win their second consecutive World Series over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Boston actually trailed for the division lead by 3½ games with 14 left to go, but ended the regular season with an eight-game win streak to force that epic Monday afternoon.

1969 New York Mets: In early August, the Chicago Cubs had a nine-game advantage in the NL East over the Mets. Chicago then went 21-29 while the Mets went 41-15. The Mets won the division and went on to defeat the Baltimore Orioles for the franchise’s first World Series championship.


Subway Series Continues

The Yankees beat the Mets Monday, 4-2, highlighted by Aaron Judge’s 47th home run of the season.  Judge remains on pace to hit 62 home runs on the season, which would break Roger Maris’ American League mark of 61 set in 1961.

The Yankees hold the overall upper hand in the regular season Subway Series, 77-61.

They also won the only subway World Series in 2000 in five games.

History shows that the regular season Subway Series is somewhat of a predictor for World Series success. Since inter-league play began in 1997, the Yankees have not lost the regular season Subway Series in years they have won it all.

A closer look in years Yankees won the World Series:

  • 2009: Yankees, 5 games to 1
  • 2000: Yankees, four games to 2
  • 1999: Tied, 3-3
  • 1998: Yankees, 2-1

Caesars Sportsbook New York has the Yankees at +450 to win the World Series, behind the Los Angeles Dodgers (+350) and Houston Astros (+400). The Mets (+475) are right behind the Yankees.

To win the AL Championship Series, the Yankees are +190, behind the Astros (+160.).

Stay tuned to for must-read articles as well as for the best NY betting promos.

After a day off on Wednesday, the Yankees begin a 10-game road trip that starts on the West Coast with four games against the A’s and three against the Angels before  flying back East for three at the Rays to begin the month of September. 



Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media ( in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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