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Game #47 Preview: Mengden vs Biagini

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Athletics (24-22) vs Blue Jays (22-24)

Oakland Athletics v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

After a terrible and heartbreaking loss yesterday afternoon, the Blue Jays take one last crack at getting a win against the Athletics this afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 1:07 ET.

Blue Jays’ Starter

Joe Biagini is making his 4th start for the big league club this afternoon. The first 3 did not go well, as he’s 0-2 with a 7.98 ERA. The calls have been pretty loud for the Jays and Biagini to give up the starting pitcher “experiment”, but it wouldn’t make sense to do so yet. He has 4 pitches that can be at least average, and with some more repetitions there is a legitimate chance he can still be a viable starter. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him back in Buffalo working through his problems if this start doesn’t go well though, but giving up on seeing what he is as a starter at any point in 2018 is probably a mistake.

Athletics’ Starter

Daniel Mengden, complete with his glorious mustache and high socks, will be on the mound for the A’s. The 25 year old is into his 3rd partial season with the Oakland Major League team. He has made 30 career starts since his callup in June 2016. His 2017 season was derailed early by a broken foot, but he made it back to the Majors eventually and put up a 3.14 ERA in 7 starts.

So far this season through 9 games, Mengden is 3-4 with a 3.75 ERA. A flyball pitcher who doesn’t strike many out, Mengden has been finding success by limiting walks. Last year’s 1.88 BB/9 rate has been more than halved to 0.89 BB/9 so far this year, which is the second best mark in the AL (behind Bartolo Colon).

The right hander throws a 92 mph fastball, while also mixing in a cutter, curveball and changeup. And batters usually square these up pretty good. The average exit velocity against his pitches is 90.6 mph, the 10th highest exit velocity against among the 126 pitchers with at least 100 balls in play.

Lineups

Ben makes this section so easy.

Yesterday’s Heroes

Gary Sanchez went 4-5 with a single, double and pair of home runs, helping his Yankees to the 8-3 win over the Royals to earn the title of Monster Bat.

Stupid Chad Pinder and his stupid 8th inning grand slam earned him the WPA King title, as that play alone was worth .581 WPA, and Pinder’s WPA total was .592 for the day.

James Paxton went the distance again, but this time he allowed 3 hits, and 2 of them scored. But he still gets Pitcher of the Day honours as he helped his Mariners beat the Tigers 7-2.

Milestone Watch

I still believe Josh Donaldson will hit a home run at some point, maybe even today. Just 3 to catch Shawn Green.

Find the Link

Find the link between Mengden and the Blue Jays’ team leader in home runs in 1998.