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Game #40 Preview: Price vs Estrada

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Red Sox (26-12) vs Blue Jays (21-18)

Boston Red Sox v Toronto Blue Jays
“It’s OK. I’ll end this in a few minutes”
Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

After taking game 1 in an exciting, hard fought battle, the Blue Jays and Red Sox are back at it this afternoon. Gametime is at 4:07 ET.

Blue Jays’ Starter

Marco Estrada is on the mound for the Blue Jays. He’s off to a rough start to the season, having thrown 38 innings over his first 7 starts. He is 2-2 with a 5.21 ERA, and has been hurt pretty badly by the longball. He has allowed a lot of flyballs even for him this year, and they are turning into home runs at a little worse than league average rate, which ultimately means he has allowed 9 in his 7 starts.

Estrada is coming off arguably his best start of the season though. He threw 6 shutout innings against the Rays last Sunday, helping the Jays take the series finale against Chris Archer and the Rays. In that game, he allowed 4 hits and struck out 3, but the 4 walks were a bit concerning.

Red Sox’ Starter

David Price makes his second appearance at Rogers Centre since leaving in the 2015 offseason. He started the year really hot (back to back 7 shutout inning games) before falling apart and allowing 4+ runs in 4 of his last 5 starts. He has struggled with numbness in his throwing hand, which has been discovered to be mild carpal tunnel syndrome. And Boston media doing Boston media things, everyone hates him because they think he’s playing Fortnite 20 hours a day.

On the season, Price is 2-4 with a 5.11 ERA. His biggest culprit is a high amount of walks, as his 10.1% is a career high. He has been hurt a bit by luck and sequencing as well, with only a 61.2% strand rate and a 4.21 FIP indicating that he maybe doesn’t deserve that 5.11 ERA as much as Boston wants to hate him for it.

Blue Jays’ Lineup

I wouldn’t be surprised to see Superstar Luke Maile back behind the plate in this one. Maybe give Russell Martin an extra day off to help him get himself corrected. Heck, give him tomorrow off too. It’s a long season, take advantage of a hot Maile, as well as Monday’s off day and let Martin rest up well.

With Price on the mound, we won’t see Granderson again. I swear Curtis, you’re not a bench player. You’re the strong side of a platoon. We’ve just played the most lefties in the AL, so it just SEEMS like you’re a bench player. But we still love you.

Speaking of which...

<insert complaint about Kendrys Morales probably playing again>

I really want Pompey and Alford and Pillar and Hernandez playing every day. I don’t know how to make this happen.

Red Sox’ Lineup

We got Brock Holt out 4 times yesterday!!! \o/

He’s probably still going to be in there again today, but we won the battle in game in 1. Maybe we’ll luck out and he’ll be on the bench tonight.

I would imagine Rafael Devers and Jackie Bradley Jr. will be back in there, although what they do with Eduardo Nunez and Hanley Ramirez I’m not sure. They have a pretty good problem on their hands getting a dozen hot hitters into a 9 man lineup (although JBJ does not qualify as a hot hitter, he is a great defender).

Christian Vazquez is probably back behind the plate.

Yesterday’s Heroes

Luke Maile

Milestone Watch

Josh Donaldson is still approaching those team home run and walk milestones. He’ll get there eventually.

Marco Estrada is standing 3+ starts away from some Blue Jays’ milestones. In 24 strikeouts, he’ll be 19th, tied with AJ Burnett. He’s also 3 starts away from 100 for his Blue Jays career.

Actual Heroes from Yesterday

Willson Contreras from the Cubs had a bit better day at the plate than Maile. He went 4-5 with a pair of home runs and a pair of doubles, driving in 7 as his Cubs beat their crosstown rival White Sox 11-2.

And somehow Michael Conforto had a higher WPA than Luke Maile. With a 2-run home run with 1 out in the top of the 9th, Conforto turned a 1-0 deficit into a 2-1 lead over the Phillies. He also had a 7% walk earlier in the night, which brings his total WPA to .719, edging out Maile’s .663.

Maile didn’t get Pitcher of the Day either. Chris Sale probably deserves it, and I’ll give it to him over Arrieta’s 7.1 shutout innings, since Arrieta walked 2 and only struck out 5. Sale struck out 15 and walked none, surrendering 3 runs over his 9 innings. He probably hates Luke Maile right about now.

Find the Link

Find the link between Price and Bob Forsch.