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Game #162 Preview: Zimmermann vs Ryu

Orioles (52-109) vs Blue Jays (90-71)

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Toronto Blue Jays Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

It has come down to this, the final game of the season, Blue Jays vs Orioles. The Blue Jays enter play 1 game out of a Wild Card spot. Lose and they go home. If they win, they need one of Boston or New York to also lose in order to force a Game 163 tiebreaker tomorrow. If they can get past today and live to see tomorrow, the Jays are set up exceptionally well with José Berríos and Robbie Ray ready to go on normal rest the next two days.

All games across MLB get underway at some point today between 3:05 ET and 3:20 ET. The Jays are scheduled for a 3:07 ET start.

Blue Jays’ Starter

Hyun Jin Ryu will take the ball for the Jays, looking to keep the season alive. This will be Ryu’s second start since coming back from the IL with shoulder tightness, and his first time back against the Yankees didn’t yield great results. He went just 4.1 innings, allowing 3 runs on 6 hits and a walk, striking out 3. I thought he actually looked pretty good, his stuff was crisp, but credit to the Yankee hitters who continued to fight off the good pitches and work Ryu. If he looks as good as he did in that start, he should have a good outing against the Orioles.

This will be Ryu’s sixth start against the Orioles, a matchup that has produced both great results and terrible results. Unfortunately, it was his last outing that came with the terrible result, right before he ended up on the IL. In that one, he went just 2.1 innings, allowing 7 runs on 8 hits and a walk, but at least the Jays came back to win that one 11-10. Outside of that outing, Ryu has been strong against the Orioles this year.

Orioles’ Starter

Rookie left hander Bruce Zimmermann will make the start for the Orioles, his 13th. He comes into play with a 4-4 record and a 4.66 ERA over 63.2 innings. His 5.22 FIP suggests he hasn’t quite been as good as his results show though, as he has struggled getting strikeouts (7.77 per 9 innings) and giving up home runs (1.84 per 9 innings). But for a bottom of the barrel team, he’s having a decent year.

Zimmermann spent the first couple months up with the Orioles before missing 3.5 months with biceps tendonitis. He came back from that injury just prior to his September 28 start against the Red Sox. He worked 4.0 innings in that one, throwing 70 pitches. If I had to guess, he’ll be allowed a little bit longer of a leash today, but expect to see a few different guys out of the bullpen in today’s game.

Blue Jays’ Lineup

Orioles’ Lineup

Yesterday’s Heroes

Brandon Lowe went 3-5 with a trio of home runs and drove in 7 runs, easily picking up the Monster Bat award along the way. His offensive explosion helped the Jays as well, as he led his Rays to the 12-2 dismantling of the Yankees.

Mitch Haniger single handedly kept his Mariners’ hopes alive yesterday. He drove in the first run in the bottom of the third to give his Mariners the 1-0 lead. He gave them a lead again in the bottom of the 5th with a 2-run home run. And he put them ahead for good in the bottom of the 8th with a 2-run single. His 4-5 night with 5 RBI gets him the WPA King award with a .847 mark, as his Mariners kept pace with the Blue Jays by beating the Angels 6-4.

Alek Manoah was one of three pitchers to throw 7 innings of 1-run ball last night, but his 1 hit against was the low mark, and his 10 strikeouts were the high mark, earning him the Pitcher of the Day award. His outing helped the Jays stave off elimination as they beat the Orioles 10-1.

Find the Link

Find the link between Austin Hays and Joaquin Benoit.

Stats retrieved from Fangraphs and Baseball Savant