Blue Jays’ fans bid a fond farewell to the Orioles today as they wrap up a 3 game series this afternoon. It is the Orioles final visit to Canada this year, and I’m sure people are petitioning the MLB to have them continue coming back, perhaps every day. The series wraps up this afternoon at 12:37 ET, so take that extended-extended lunch break. You deserve it.
Blue Jays’ Starter
Rookie left hander Thomas Pannone makes his first career MLB start. Between an 80 game suspension and time in the Toronto bullpen, Pannone has made just 9 Minor League starts this season. He hasn’t exactly forced his way into this situation either, as he had a 5.36 ERA over 50.1 innings. But when you’re one of the most advanced pitching prospects in a year such as this for the Blue Jays, the organization will force your hand, not the other way around.
At least with Toronto he has looked pretty good coming out of the bullpen. It was only 4.1 innings, but he allowed 2 runs on 3 hits and a walk, striking out 6. I’d like for him to go a little bit longer than that, but even if he replicated those numbers in today’s start, I’d be pretty happy.
The Orioles counter with their own rookie, right hander David Hess. Hess is making his 13th start of the season, and 15th appearance overall. To say he isn’t doing well might be an understatement. In 65 innings, he is 2-7 with a 5.95 ERA, and that ERA is half a run better than his FIP. He has been worse than average at allowing walks (3.88 per 9 innings), has done a poor job getting strikeouts (5.54 per 9 innings), and has been absolutely abysmal at keeping the ball in the ballpark (2.08 per 9 innings - second worst in all of baseball among pitchers with at least 60 innings, only better than Dylan Bundy).
Hess made a start against the Jays at the beginning of June and did pretty well. He went 6 innings, allowed just 1 run on 5 hits including a home run, walking 2 and striking out 4. That was the last of his nice run to start his career, where he went 2-2 with a 3.07 ERA over his first 5 starts. Since then, he has been pretty terrible, although his last 2 starts have been an improvement. Against Tampa and Cleveland, he allowed just 5 runs on 9 hits over 11.2 innings, but he did allow 7 walks to just 6 strikeouts, and surrendered a pair of home runs.
Blue Jays’ Lineup
I would guess that Danny Jansen will catch Pannone today, given that they at least have a little bit of history together.
Russell Martin is probably back at 3B today, which will cause one of Diaz, Ureña and Travis to sit. I would guess Ureña, but who knows.
Billy McKinney hit his first career homer yesterday, so Gibby might reward him with another start today. I’m not sure where that fits in a crowded outfield though. I’m a little surprised no one has shown enough interest in Granderson and Smoak to help clear the Major League roster a little bit.
I keep pulling for Austin Wynns to be in the lineup, and the last 2 days Buck has let me down. I believe in Wynns today though, with the day game after the night game.
Chris Davis, who struck out 4 times yesterday, is likely to sit today with the lefty on the mound. I would guess that means Trey Mancini at 1B, Adam Jones at DH and an outfield of Andreoli, Mullins and Gentry.
David Peralta went 3-3 with a home run, double and a walk to earn our Monster Bat award. His hot night at the plate helped the Diamondbacks take down the visiting Dodgers 5-4, expanding their lead over the Dodgers to 3.5 games. The Rockies, who I am going to go visit this weekend (more on that later), are now 1.5 back of the Diamondbacks.
Scooter Gennett hit a 2 out home run in the top of the 9th inning last night, giving the Reds the 8-7 lead. They would rally to score 1 more, and hold on to take down the Brewers 9-7. Gennett’s home run provided .405 WPA towards his WPA King total of .489. He also chipped in a big single in the top of the 4th.
Kevin Gausman threw 8 shutout innings, allowing 4 hits and 2 walks while striking out 5. His Pitcher of the Day efforts helped his Braves to the 6-1 win over the Pirates, expanding their AL East lead to 2 games over the Phillies.
Find the Link
Find the link between Hess and Charlie Furbush.
I take off for a nice road trip to Denver, leaving this afternoon. As of right now, no one has signed up to take over the Gameday Previews, so you will all be left in the dark for the next week.