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Game # 152 Preview: Estrada vs Yacabonis

Blue Jays (69-82) vs Orioles (43-108)

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Baltimore Orioles Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

The Blue Jays sadly play their final game against Baltimore this season, looking to finish up the season series with a win and push their record against the worst team in baseball to 15-4. Tonight’s game gets underway at 7:05 ET.

Blue Jays’ Starter

Marco Estrada got bumped up a day to make this start, since he threw just 55 pitches against the Yankees on Friday. The Jays are jumping over Sam Gaviglio’s turn in the rotation, who may or may not make up that start on Friday back in Toronto.

Estrada only threw 55 pitches because he was terrible. Through 2.2 innings, he allowed 8 runs on 6 hits and 3 walks, striking out 2. He was hit around hard, but never gave up a home run, an impressive feat for someone like Estrada in Yankee Stadium.

Estrada has struggled to find consistency since coming back from injury at the end of July. In 9 starts, he has had 2 really good ones, 2 mediocre, and 5 absolute stinkers. His second half ERA is 7.89 as a result.

Orioles’ Starter

Jimmy Yacabonis, perhaps the funnest name I have written this season, makes his 5th start of the season. Through 4 starts and 5 relief appearances, the right handed Yacabonis is 0-2 with a 7.22 ERA. He has been hit hard this year, resulting in a very unhealthy 8 home runs in 28.2 innings. That’s a rate worse than yesterday’s starter Dylan Bundy, who had the worst rate among pitchers with at least 100 innings.

Yacabonis pitched a couple games against the Jays last year, but nothing in his 9 appearances this year. As a quick side note from those games last year - Yacabonis “earned” the win in both games, facing a total of 10 batters over 3 innings. Those 2 wins are Yacabonis’ only Major League wins. Let’s not let him get number 3.

Blue Jays’ Lineup

Billy McKinney has started 3 straight games in the outfield. The outfield is quite crowded these days, but I’d be alright if he continued to draw the starts out there.

I’d like to see Anthony Alford get a start in the outfield at some point too, although I’m not sure how that would fit into the crowd. I would imagine Kevin Pillar will be back out there, since I doubt Gibby isn’t going to sit him in back to back games, and Teoscar Hernandez has already sat back to back games.

Devon Travis seems to have fallen into the 1 on, 1 off routine, although that just may be a bad estimate of mine based on the last 6 games. I hope he can finish off the season healthy.

Orioles’ Lineup

Chris Davis pushed his WAR down to -3.0 last night, despite getting on base once by taking a curveball off the foot. With 10 games to go after tonight, he’s going to need a big week to break the record, and I doubt he plays enough to do so.

I just realized Mark Trumbo hasn’t been in the lineup this series. It appears the hulking slugger went for knee surgery at the beginning of month.

Cedric Mullins, the man who pushed longtime center fielder Adam Jones into RF, has had a pretty good bat for the O’s, putting up a 116 wRC+ over 140 plate appearances. His defense has been questionable though, although questionable is probably better than what Jones was doing out there. Through the small sample of 280 innings in CF, Mullins has a -7 DRS and a -24.0 UZR/150. Outs Above Average gives him a -1 so far, and looking at the fancy new Directional Outs Above Average (a fun new tool from the Baseball Savant guys led by Daren Willman), that run below average has come while going back to his left.

Yesterday’s Heroes

Peter O’Brien of the Marlins went 2-2 with a home run, single and a pair of walks, good enough to earn our Monster Bat award. He couldn’t help his Marlins enough though as they fell 4-2 to the Nationals, dropping their 92nd game of the year.

Chris Taylor hit a walk off home run in the 10th inning to give the Dodgers the 3-2 win over the Cardinals last night, helping their playoff chances with a week and a half to go. The Dodgers are now 1.5 games up on Colorado for the NL West lead, while also being tied with the Cardinals, who hold the second Wild Card spot. Taylor’s WPA King total was .529.

Jameson Taillon struck out 11 over 7 shutout innings, scattering 4 hits and a walk through his masterful outing. His Pirates held on for the 2-1 win over the Royals, although our Pitcher of the Day didn’t factor into the decision.

Find the Link

Find the link between Yacabonis and Lewis Brinson.