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Game #28 Preview: Bassitt vs Thornton

Athletics (14-15) vs Blue Jays (13-14)

MLB: Oakland Athletics at Toronto Blue Jays Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports

The Blue Jays go for the season series sweep against the Athletics, while simultaneously getting their win-loss record back to the standard Blue Jay level of .500. Today’s game gets underway at 1:07 ET, so if you’re planning on bringing your kids to partake in the Junior Jays festivities and haven’t left yet, you’re probably already late.

Blue Jays’ Starter

Rookie righty Trent Thornton makes the 6th start of his young career. After starting the season hot and pitching like someone you can’t miss, his last few starts have been a lot more forgettable, as he allowed 13 runs in 12.2 innings. But it wasn’t all bad, especially his last start, where he was able to get 5 punchouts without issuing a walk. He got knocked around a little bit, which is going to happen with most rookies as they work to find consistency in their pitches, but the swing and miss stuff was still there.

Athletics’ Starter

The A’s are going with 30 year old right hander Chris Bassitt. Bassitt started the season on the IL with a leg injury he suffered in the Spring. But after making a rehab start in A-Ball, and then a couple more in AAA, he made his season debut with the A’s on Tuesday. That start on Tuesday went quite well for Bassitt too, as he made it through 5 shutout innings, striking out 7. He gave up 2 hits and walked 4, which was the worrying sign for him, but otherwise he was good, healthy and his velocity was at the same level as previous years.

Bassitt’s career has been good, but interrupted by injuries, including Tommy John in 2016 that made him miss the entire 2017 season. Throughout his entire career, spanning 5 different seasons, Bassitt has made 31 starts and 10 relief appearances. For his career, he has thrown 196.1 innings, pitching to a 3.76/3.96/4.59 line. He hasn’t been much of a strikeout pitcher (7.15 K/9) while also issuing a high amount of walks (3.67 BB/9), but it has been his ability to keep the ball in the yard (0.64 HR/9) that has given him the good ERA and FIP.


Today's Lineups

Marcus Semien - SS Eric Sogard - SS
Robbie Grossman - LF Justin Smoak - DH
Matt Chapman - 3B Randal Grichuk - CF
Khris Davis - DH Rowdy Tellez - 1B
Stephen Piscotty - RF Vladimir Guerrero Jr. - 3B
Chad Pinder - 2B Billy McKinney - LF
Mark Canha - 1B Brandon Drury - 2B
Ramon Laureano - CF Socrates Brito - RF
Josh Phegley - C Luke Maile - C

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is back at 3B today, batting in the number 5 spot again. I thought for sure they would give him DH duties today, as they look to continue to ease him back into every day play. But I guess with the off day tomorrow, they’ll just use that to give him a break.

Socrates Brito gets the start in RF, while Teoscar Hernandez is on the bench. The Blue Jays have 4 lefties and a switchy in the lineup against the right handed Bassitt.

On the A’s side of things, Mark Canha makes the start at 1B, giving Kendrys Morales the day off. Otherwise it’s a pretty standard lineup for them against righties.

Yesterday’s Heroes

David Bote knocked 2 home runs and drove in 5 runs, good enough to win our Monster Bat award. His big bat helped knock off the Diamondbacks 9-1.

Old friend J.A. Happ gets the Pitcher of the Day honours, as he went 7 shutout innings. He surrendered 5 hits and didn’t walk anyone, and managed just 2 strikeouts. But it was enough as his Yankees held on to beat the Giants 6-4.

Marcell Ozuna struck hard and struck early yesterday. He hit a go ahead 3 run home run in the 4th innings, and then padded the lead in the 6th with a 2 run double which made it 5-2. Both teams tacked on another run, but Ozuna was the big difference maker, earning the WPA King title with a .483 mark in the Cardinals 6-3 win over the Reds.

Find the Link

Find the link between Bassitt and Bartolo Colon.

Stats are courtesy of Fangraphs