After a long road trip, the Jays head home to welcome the Rays into town to open a 4 game series, the second last home series and final homestand of the this __________ 2018 season. Tonight’s game gets underway at 7:07 ET.
Blue Jays’ Starter
I seemingly didn’t realize there was a game today when yesterday I mentioned Gaviglio was pushed until Friday. But Sam Gaviglio is indeed starting today. Sammy G makes his 22nd start for the Blue Jays, the second most on the team (oy). He is 3-8 with a 5.25 ERA, although FIP has liked his work a bit more than that at 4.76.
Gaviglio has done fairly well this season getting strikeouts (8.08 per 9 innings, just short of the 8.23 average for a starter) while limiting walks (2.67 per 9 innings, a fair bit better than the 3.02 league average for starters). While those have been pretty good, especially for a backend starter, he is getting hit pretty hard. He has allowed 1.67 HR/9, nearly half a home run per inning more than average.
Gaviglio has made 2 starts against the Rays this season. The first one was pretty terrible, and the second was pretty good. Unsurprisingly, he took the loss in both games. The first one, he allowed 5 runs on 7 hits, giving up 2 walks while striking out 3 in 3.1 innings. The second start he allowed 2 runs (1 earned) on 6 hits over 5.1 innings, striking out 7 and walking none. He allowed a home run in the first game, but didn’t allow one the last time.
Ryne Stanek is the opener in this game. It will be the 27th time this season he will have opened a game. In those 26 openings plus 28 relief appearances, Stanek is 2-3 with a 2.49 ERA, although pitching a little worse by FIP at 3.36.
Taking a look at the most recent usage of Rays pitchers, I would guess that Yonny Chirinos is the big innings eater today. Chirinos has pitched in 16 games this year, and is 4-5 with a 3.89 ERA, while FIP thinks he has been a bit better at 3.62. Chirinos really held the Jays hitters down in the only game he has pitched in against Toronto this year, throwing 7 relief innings allowing just 1 run on 4 hits a couple weeks ago.
Blue Jays’ Lineup
Yesterday was Randal Grichuk’s turn to sit on this carousel of outfielders. He’ll be back in there for this one.
Anthony Alford has yet to make it into a game since he was called up on Monday. I don’t expect him to draw a start, but he may still get in there as a pinch hitter.
I’m curious to see if Russell Martin will play another game this season. I’m sure he has had the conversation with Gibby, but it seems that he isn’t even in consideration for playing time. It’s probably best for his tired old body anyway I suppose.
They have played some exciting baseball of late, and as Fangraphs pointed out yesterday, have the 3rd best record in baseball since the All Star Break. Their problem is that at the break they were so far behind the Yankees for the first Wild Card, and the second Wild Card belongs to the A’s, who have the best record in baseball since the All Star Break. So as it stands right now, the Rays are 5.5 back of a playoff position with 11 games to go. Luckily for them, they play the Jays in 7 of those games.
The Rays seem to be able to run a pretty lefty heavy lineup against righties, giving starts to Ji-Man Choi, Jake Bauers and Nick Ciuffo. Add in regular lefties Joey Wendle, Mallex Smith and Kevin Kiermaier, and there could be 6 or so lefties to face Gaviglio today. Willy Adames, Tommy Pham and Matt Duffy are pretty solid righties to have to face as well in this surprisingly decent Rays’ lineup.
Luke Voit went 4-4 with a pair of home runs yesterday to earn the Monster Bat award. He helped the Yankees beat down the Red Sox 10-1 and prevent them from celebrating the Division Title in their stadium.
Jason Kipnis hit a walk off grand slam last night, which is pretty much an automatic WPA King award. Cleveland was down 1-0, but that home run turned it into a 4-1 win over the White Sox. Kipnis’ WPA on the day was .432.
Brett Anderson of the Athletics threw 6.2 shutout innings, allowing 3 hits and nothing else to earn the Pitcher of the Day award as Oakland walked all over the Angels 10-0. That helped the A’s keep pace with the Yankees, who they are trying to track down for homefield advantage in the Wild Card game, currently sitting 2.5 back. It also helped hold the line against the Rays coming up on their rear, although I doubt they’re even looking in the mirror at this point.
Find the Link
Find the link between Stanek and Carter Capps.