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Game #158 Preview: Bundy vs Kay

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Orioles (51-106) vs Blue Jays (64-93)

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Toronto Blue Jays Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports

The Blue Jays will look to keep their winning streak against the Orioles alive this evening, as they go for their 5th straight win against them dating back to last Tuesday. Tonight’s game is set to get underway at 7:07 ET.

Blue Jays’ Starter

In what will likely be his final outing of 2019 (unless they start him on Sunday over Clay Buchholz, which I am 100% in favour of), Anthony Kay will make the start tonight (or at least work as the bulk guy). This will be the 4th time Kay will pitch at the Major League level, and he has had some mixed results in his 14 innings. He has allowed 9 runs on 15 hits, walking 5 and striking out 13, but he hasn’t allowed a home run in the big leagues yet. I’m sure that’ll end today, but his ability to limit home runs even stretched to the Minor Leagues, where he allowed just 12 in 133.2 innings. He allowed just 7 in 122.2 innings the year before too.

Kay faced the Orioles his last time out, as he worked as a bulk guy last Thursday. He picked up his first career win by going 4 innings, allowing 2 runs on 4 hits and a walk and striking out 3. It was the shortest outing of his 3 with the Jays, but the team is trying to limit his workload as the season wraps up.

Orioles’ Starter

The Orioles will counter with Dylan Bundy, who will be making his 30th start of the season for the Orioles. He is 6-14 with a 4.89 ERA, pitching to a very similar 4.76 FIP, which also happens to be smack dab on his career FIP. He has done an excellent job striking batters out this year, getting 156 in 154.2 innings. His walk rate is above his career average, at 3.26 per 9 innings just barely below the league average rate. But after leading all of baseball last year with 41 home runs, he is down to 28 this year, despite the major uptick in home runs across baseball.

Bundy faced the Jays last Wednesday and danced around danger all night. He allowed 5 hits and 5 walks in 5 innings, but he managed to strike out 8 which helped him strand 8 baserunners. A double play also helped his cause, so he only allowed 1 run in his 5 innings of work, on a 1 out single by Bo Bichette in the second inning.

Blue Jays’ Lineup

As reported early this morning/late last night, depending on where you are, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. is done for the season after getting an emergency appendectomy last night. He was originally scheduled to play left field, but then was scratched due to illness. So it’s promising that he felt his quad was good enough to play LF. Now he’ll get a chance to heal that up some more and hopefully be 100% by Spring.

Anthony Alford, last night’s hero with not only a home run but also an infield single on a routine ground ball, of which he was clocked at a blistering 31.8 feet per second, followed by a fun stolen base through the legs of Jonathan Villar, damn well better play every inning of the last 5 games. He’s ready. Let him ride it out in CF.

Cavan Biggio’s stellar September continued yesterday, as he upped his batting stats this month to .328/.436/.641 (179 wRC+) as he hit a home run and worked 3 walks. He also stretched his hitting streak to 7 games and his on base streak to 24, both streaks he can hopefully continue today.

Orioles’ Lineup

The top third of the lineup have done really well for the Orioles, especially against the Jays recently. Jonathan Villar is 8-23 with 3 home runs and a walk in the last 4 games against the Jays. Austin Hays is 7-13 with 3 home runs and 2 walks in the last 4 games against the Jays. Trey Mancini is 10-22 with a home run and 2 walks in the last 4 games against the Jays. All three will likely be in the lineup the next couple days as well, and will look to continue their hot streaks against Blue Jay pitching.

I’m guessing we’ll see Mark Trumbo in the game tonight against Anthony Kay. He has missed most of this season with back problems, and just finally got back into Major League games this month. His return hasn’t gone that well either, as he is hitting just .200/.259/.320 in 27 PA, and has yet to hit a home run.

Yesterday’s Heroes

Jorge Alfaro went 2-4 with a pair of home runs, including a Grand Slam, driving in 5 to pick up the Monster Bat award. His offensive output helped the Marlins beat the Mets 8-4, pushing the Mets to 5 back of a Wild Card spot with 6 games to go.

Anthony Alford, with his walk off home run, is the obvious winner of the WPA King title on a very short schedule night. Alford’s .579 WPA topped Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s second place .407 mark by a healthy margin. As we all know, the Jays won 11-10 over the Orioles for the second time in a week.

In pretty slim pickin’s for Pitcher of the Day, we’ll give that honour to Patrick Corbin. Corbin threw 6 innings of 1 run ball, allowing 3 hits and 4 walks while striking out 6. He picked up the win in the Nationals 7-2 win over the Phillies.

Find the Link

Find the link between Bundy and the player who got 5 of his 62 career RBI against the Jays’ worst pitcher this year (he didn’t get those RBI this year though).

Stats are courtesy of Fangraphs