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Game #41 Preview: Richards vs Stripling

Red Sox (25-18) vs Blue Jays (23-17)

Boston Red Sox v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

The Blue Jays and Red Sox continue their three game series this evening, playing game two under the lights in Dunedin. The Game will get underway at 7:37 again.

Blue Jays’ Starter

Ross Stripling will head to the mound again today, hopefully able to continue the dominance he showed in the latter part of his last outing, and not what he has shown otherwise this year. On the season, Stripling is 0-2 with a 5.91 ERA through 5 starts and 21.1 innings, and it looked like those numbers were going to get worse his last time out. However, after allowing 4 of the first 5 batters to reach base with 2 scoring, Stripling became an entirely new pitcher, striking out 9 batters and allowing only 1 more baserunner the rest of the way through 5 innings. He will be in tough again against the Red Sox, and hopefully he can find that dominance again.

Red Sox’ Starter

Veteran righty Garrett Richards will go for the Red Sox, making his 9th start of the season. He is doing fairly well in the early going, coming into play with a 3-2 record and a 3.89 ERA. He seems to be doing everything this season close to the averages of what he put up in his time in Los Angeles, despite having a couple mph less on his fastball, and losing the ability he once had to dominate with ground balls. But he’s still effective, and I’m sure the Red Sox are quite pleased with his early results.

Richards faced the Jays back on April 21, and he just didn’t have it working for him in that game. He allowed 4 runs on 4 hits over 4.2 innings, but the big number in that one is the 6 walks allowed, plus a bean ball, while striking out just 2. He turned it around in his next start, where he went 7 shutout innings with 10 strikeouts and no walks against the Mets, and I would be quite surprised if the Jays work him for so many walks this time around.

Blue Jays’ Lineup

Rowdy Tellez is surprising, supposedly, not injured. He came out of the game on Sunday after tripping up getting out of the batter’s box, but is reportedly OK. That means he will likely be in the lineup tonight, probably at DH.

Cavan Biggio, who was originally slated to play the OF last night, instead was a late move to the DH spot as he had tightness in his neck. He still managed a hit in the game, so hopefully it isn’t anything serious, and he’s able to be in the lineup tonight.

Danny Jansen continued his strong May last night with his 2 hits and a walk, bringing his batting line to .250/.302/.475 (115 wRC+) since we got out of April. I’m not sure if Jansen will catch Stripling tonight or Matz tomorrow, but the Red Sox are sending out a pair of righties, so it probably doesn’t matter which night is Jansen’s and which is Reese McGuire’s. Jansen may need a night off tonight after taking a ball to the cup last night.

Red Sox’ Lineup

Marwin Gonzalez got the start yesterday, as Enrique Hernández moved to the outfield, which seems to be their standard lineup against lefties. Against the righty today, expect Hernández to be back in the infield while Franchy Cordero gets the start in LF. Gonzalez, who can play pretty much anywhere, may be used to give a break to someone else.

Alex Verdugo proved to be a bit of a tough out yesterday, picking up a pair of hits including the Red Sox’ only extra base hit. The 25 year old seems poised to bother the Jays for several years to come, as he has a strong bat and a very good ability to not strike out (although the Jays did get him twice in the latter part of the game). Even with the strikeouts last night, Verdugo still falls in the top 10 out of 156 qualified batters in lowest strikeout rate, sitting now at 11.9%.

Yesterday’s Heroes

Miguel Sano went 3-4, launching 3 home runs into the night to pick up the Monster Bat award. He helped the Twins get retribution against the White Sox, beating them 5-4 after getting boat raced the night before.

Spencer Turnbull threw this season’s 5th no-hitter last night, completing the feat with just 2 walks allowed and 9 strikeouts to earn the Pitcher of the Day award. His night of dominance allowed his Tigers to beat the Mariners 5-0.

Turnbull also got the WPA King award as well, racking up .479 WPA. It was a crazy race though, as Sano came in second at .477, Ramon Laureano was third at .475, and Brandon Woodruff came in a distant fourth at .471.

Find the Link

Find the link between Marwin Gonzalez and Marco Duarte. I’m having difficulties finding other results, so there’s an extra point in there if you can find another instance of this link (I don’t know if it exists or not).

Stats retrieved from Fangraphs and Baseball Savant