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Game #58 Preview: Stroman vs Gray

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Blue Jays (21-36) vs Rockies (29-27)

Toronto Blue Jays v Colorado Rockies Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

The Blue Jays will look to bounce back from their drubbing last night and put an end to their 4 game losing streak in game 2 of their 3 game set against the Rockies. Today’s game is an even later start than last night, this one set for 9:10 ET.

Blue Jays’ Starter

The Jays will hand the ball to the only pitcher on the staff seemingly capable of leading the team to victory. The Jays have won just twice in their last 11 games, with both of those wins going to Stroman.

Stroman has earned those wins too. He went 6 innings and 5 innings, allowing just a solo home run as the only runs to score, allowing 5 hits in each. He only struck out a total of 6, a total that is fairly low for him. He also had his 6 walk game against the Red Sox, which remarkably none of them came around to score. So he played with fire a fair bit, but still earned the wins, which this team would be even more depressing without.

Rockies’ Starter

The Rockies will send Jon Gray to the mound for game 2. I’m a little disappointed that he’s not pitching the finale against Aaron Sanchez, as they could have a competition to see who comes out of game first with blister/finger problems. Gray made it to the 6th inning his last time out before being removed, so he probably gets better odds over Sanchez.

Gray is having a bit of a down season by his standards, as he’s currently sitting at a 4-4 record with a 4.52 ERA. His FIP is a career high 4.49, nearly three quarters of a run higher than his career average. He’s still getting the strikeouts (9.32 per 9 innings) but he’s walking more than he ever has before (3.43 per 9 innings) and surrendering home runs at a greater rate than ever before too (1.51 per 9 innings).

Blue Jays’ Lineup

Rowdy Tellez came out of the game last night at least in part due to a strained hamstring. He wasn’t expected to be in the lineup today and tomorrow anyway, so he’ll get a few days rest and hopefully be good to go for Tuesday’s return home. Just don’t expect him to pinch hit.

Danny Jansen should be back in the lineup tonight after yesterday’s off day.

I knew watching Vladimir Guerrero Jr. play in Colorado was going to be fun, and he certainly didn’t disappoint last night. I can’t wait to see what tonight brings.

Rockies’ Lineup

Trevor Story certainly had a fun game yesterday. Story’s huge game brought his slash line up to .294/.362/.561, good enough for a park adjusted wRC+ of 125, which looks really good with his excellent defense.

Even with all of their shellacking they did last night, their first basemen continue to struggle (last night was David Murphy going 1-5). As a team, they have gotten a .205/.296/.368 (61 wRC+) line from their first basemen, hitting just 7 home runs and being worth -0.7 WAR. The combination of Murphy, Josh Fuentes and Mark Reynolds is not good for a team with playoff aspirations, but they didn’t upgrade the position last year either.

Yesterday’s Heroes

Despite Story’s big day, Niko Goodrum is actually our Monster Bat from yesterday. Goodrum matched Story’s 2 home runs and a double, but also chipped in a pair of singles whereas Story got out twice. So Goodrum takes the award with his 5-5 night, which helped his Tigers take down the host Braves 8-2.

Miles Mikolas made it through 7 strong innings last night, surrendering just a single run on 6 hits and a pair of walks, striking out just 3. But it was still good enough to earn the Pitcher of the Day award, even if he didn’t earn the win, as it took 10 innings for his Cardinals to beat the Cubs 2-1.

Christian Walker had a big night, going 3-3 with a walk and a big 6th inning home run. All told, he had a WPA King total of .425 WPA. But his attempts were futile, as his Diamondbacks got beat by the Mets 5-4.

Find the Link

Find the link between Gray and Dylan Bundy (I hope this one is actually hard...)

Stats are courtesy of Fangraphs