The Toronto Blue Jays are one game back from the final Wild Card spot, so a win tonight would not only put them in a better position for their postseason hunt but also give them a series win over the Orioles. We’ll preview the game before going over which team I’ll be backing on the F5 moneyline.
After coming up with just three runs in the first game of the series while their pitching staff allowed 12 hits, the Orioles bounced back in a big way last night on both sides of the ball. In their 7-0 win, Baltimore got six shutout innings from Dean Kremer and three perfect innings from their bullpen.
Offensively, the Orioles scored two runs off Kevin Gausman but would do most of their damage off the Toronto bullpen, scoring five runs in the 8th inning. Anthony Santander had the biggest day at the plate with two home runs.
Closing out the series on the mound for Baltimore will be Kyle Gibson, who is set to make his 27th start of the year. The right-hander picked up a win in his most recent outing, but the credit goes to his offense since he allowed four earned runs on nine hits to the A’s across five innings of work. When Gibson last faced the Blue Jays on July 31st, he also picked up a win by allowing one earned run over six innings.
Gibson takes on the Blue Jays lineup again tonight after they were shut out yesterday for the second time in their last five games. Toronto picked up five hits off Dean Kremer, none of which went for extra bases. Ultimately, the Blue Jays would leave just four runners on base since they could not reach base in the last three innings of the game.
With a chance to win the series and better their position in the Wild Card, the Blue Jays will have José Berríos on the bump. The right-hander threw 5.2 shutout innings with eight strikeouts against the Reds in his last outing, which was a nice bounce back after a brutal start against the Cubs that saw him exit the game after just 4.1 innings.
The Blue Jays F5 moneyline is currently priced at (-115), and I’ll be backing them for my play. Some players just own certain teams in their careers; for José Berríos, that team is the Orioles. With a 10-0 record and 2.66 ERA in 13 career starts against them, it’s safe to say Berríos has their number. In his lone start again them this season, the right-hander threw 7.2 shutout innings, so between his success and Kyle Gibson’s recent inconsistency, I think the Blue Jays will have the lead after five.
Since July 24th, the Blue Jays offense is hitting .250 with a .711 OPS against right-handed pitching on the road. While they did falter last night, Toronto faces a starter today that is in the 33rd percentile in xERA/xwOBA, 30th percentile in xSLG, and 20th percentile in xBA. Gibson also has a 5.34 ERA and .284 batting average against at home this season.
Baltimore is hitting .261 against righties at home over the past month, but none of those righties have been named José Berríos. Not only is the right-hander in the 70th percentile in hard-hit percentage, but in his five starts against Baltimore in a Blue Jays jersey, he has never allowed more than three earned runs.
Toronto Blue Jays F5 (-110)