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Game #57 Preview: Jackson vs Marquez

Blue Jays (21-35) vs Rockies (28-27)

Toronto Blue Jays v Tampa Bay Rays Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

The Blue Jays are off to Denver for a 3 game weekend series against the Rockies. Today’s game gets underway at 8:40 ET.

Blue Jays’ Starter

The Jays are sending Edwin Jackson back out to the mound to make another start, hoping for a little more success than the last couple times he has been out there. Through 3 starts and 14 innings, Jackson is 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA, meaning he has given up 14 runs. That has come on the back of 20 hits, and more importantly 5 home runs, as he has had a difficult time keeping the ball in the ballpark. I’m not sure he’s headed to the right ballpark to address that problem either.

If you’re looking for something positive from his pitching this year, he has only walked 3 batters. Although for the hitters, there really is no point in working a walk if you can do damage on a very hittable ball, which you’ll get from Jackson. I’d like to say that Jackson’s days are numbered with the Jays, but given that he’s healthy and has an attached arm, he’s probably going to keep going out to the mound every 5 or so days.

Rockies’ Starter

The Rockies will open the series with staff Ace German Marquez. Marquez really started dominating after the all-star break last season, and since then has 171.1 masterful innings over 26 starts. That’s an average of nearly 6.2 innings per start, and he as an ERA of 3.05 in that time frame, which is excellent even when your home ballpark isn’t Coors Field. His FIP in that timeframe is 2.68, thanks to elite strikeout and walk numbers, as well as keeping the ball on the ground and therefore in the ballpark.

For the 2019 season, Marquez is 5-2 with a 3.56 ERA. His strikeouts are sitting just below one per inning, but his walk rate and home run rate are both improved from last season. He’s doing a good job working his excellent slider into his repertoire more and more this season, and now he throws it as much as his curveball, which is likely a huge part of his breakout.

Blue Jays’ Lineup

We’re back in the National League, so that means we have to play by their archaic rules and bench the DH. That likely means Rowdy Tellez makes just 1 start this weekend, but considering we’re facing 3 righties all weekend, Montoyo can get him in to the lineup whenever he sees fit.

Edwin Jackson has a career line of .166/.203/.199 (7 wRC+) with a whopping 2 home runs in 334 career plate appearances. So we don’t even need a DH anyway.

Cavan Biggio, who has missed the start of the last 2 games, is hopefully over the bug that was spreading through the clubhouse.

Rockies’ Lineup

As a team, the Rockies are hitting .261/.324/.456, numbers that look pretty solid, but are reduced to an 87 wRC+ once park factors are considered. But they’re still scoring a lot, currently sitting at 5.36 runs per game, which is 6th in all of baseball. Again, the park they play in definitely helps, but that’s not much of a consolation as we’re in that park tonight.

Every conversation about the Rockies for the next several years will begin with third baseman Nolan Arenado, who signed a massive 8 year contract extension before the season began. Arenado is off to his typical season, currently hitting .332/.385/.618 (140 wRC+) with 15 home runs and sitting in the top 5 in baseball in Runs and RBI.

Top prospect Brendan Rogers has been up with the team for a couple weeks now, and has gotten into 10 games so far. In 36 PA, he’s hitting a very solid .303/.361/.364, although he hasn’t really shown much for power yet, and he’s still looking for his first career home run.

Yesterday’s Heroes

Mike Moustakas went 4-6 yesterday, knocking out a pair of home runs to earn the Monster Bat award. His Brewers walked all over the Pirates 11-5.

The Rockies won 11-10 in 11 innings yesterday afternoon against the Diamondbacks, getting a walk-off single from Daniel Murphy for the team’s 4th walkoff of their current homestand. The walkoff was worth .348 WPA, but that wasn’t all of Murphy’s WPA King day. Murphy had 2 other hits and 2 other RBI, which brings his WPA total all the way up to .518 for the day.

Dodgers lefty Hyun-Jin Ryu has exploded into one of the best pitchers in baseball, and that was on full display again last night. Ryu finished his day with 7.2 shutout innings, allowing just a walk and 4 hits while striking out 7 to once again earn Pitcher of the Day honours. It was the 4th time in 11 starts that Ryu has gone 7+ shutout innings, and he is now 8-1 with a 1.48 ERA. He has yet to allow more than 2 runs in a start this season, and his 1 walk in this game matched his season high. He once again led his Dodgers to victory last night, a 2-0 win over the visiting Mets.

Find the Link

Find the link between Marquez and Blue Jays’ reliever Daniel Hudson.

Stats are courtesy of Fangraphs