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Game #112 Preview: McKenzie vs White

Guardians (60-52) vs Blue Jays (60-51)

Cleveland Guardians v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images

The Blue Jays will look to put an end to their recent losing ways, as they play the second of three against the visiting Guardians. Today’s game is set for a 3:07 ET start.

Blue Jays’ Starter

Deadline acquisition Mitch White will get the start for the Blue Jays. His first start for the Jays was alright, although I’m sure the Jays could have used a bit more length out of him. In Minnesota a week ago, White went 4.2 innings, allowing 3 runs on 6 hits and a walk, striking out just 2.

The low strikeout total isn’t new for him, as he has struck out just 7.27 batters per 9 innings this year. But he can be dominating even while not getting strikeouts, as his only start with a lower K rate this year was a game where he went 5 shutout innings against the Giants, where he struck out just 1 batter but also only allowed hit.

Guardians’ Starter

The Guardians will send another great pitcher out to the mound in this one too (as they will also do tomorrow), with young righty Triston McKenzie getting the ball today. In 20 starts and a relief appearance, McKenzie has thrown a career high 128 innings so far this year, pitching to an 8-8 record with a 3.18 ERA. His greatest strength is his command, as he has walked just 2.32 batters per 9 innings.

McKenzie has faced the Jays this year, picking up the win back on May 7 in Cleveland. He threw 6 innings in that one, allowing 2 runs on 4 hits and 2 walks, striking out 6. None of the Blue Jays cleared the fence in that one.

Blue Jays’ Lineup

Bo Bichette has really taken to the number 5 spot in the batting order after a little over a week there, yesterday seeing his 6 game hitting streak come to an end. But even with the 0-3 yesterday, he is still 10-30 with a trio of doubles and a trio of home runs since sliding down in the order on August 4. The Jays really need his bat, along with a few others guys, to be hot right now. Unfortunately the rest of the team is struggling right now, as Bo is the only one doing anything right now, having driven in over half of the team’s runs over the last week.

Cavan Biggio has been getting a fair bit of playing time recently. He has started all but one game since the beginning of the series against the Twins, and he has a home run and a pair of doubles in that span, and has his season wRC+ up over 100 at the moment. He has also been playing solid defense wherever he fills in, with positive numbers across the board in Defensive Runs Saved, Ultimate Zone Rating, and Outs above average for his play in the outfield, at second base and at first base. As a result, he’s up to 1 WAR on the season, which is great considering he flirted with replacement level last year as he fought through injuries and an uncomfortable position.

Guardians’ Lineup

They came out in full force yesterday, scoring 8 runs and knocking 14 hits. Every starter got on base at least twice yesterday, as they had their top to bottom assault working well.

José Ramírez, who had a phenomenal start to his season, has seen his wRC+ get lower and lower each month. He put up a 216 wRC+ in April, then in May he put up a still elite 176 mark. Since then, his monthly wRC+ have been 136, 120 and now just 86 in August. Yesterday’s 3-3 night with a home run and walk has to feel good for him.

Yesterday’s Heroes

José Ramírez, with his aforementioned 3-3 with a home run and walk, driving in 4 runs, is the Monster Bat winner.

J.D. Martinez hit a game tying single in the bottom of the 9th, setting up the walkoff as well by pushing the winning run to third. The winning run didn’t score until the 10th inning, but the Red Sox still beat the Yankees 3-2, thanks in large part to Martinez’s big single. He gets the WPA King trophy with a .566 mark.

Cal Quantrill picks up the Pitcher of the Day award for his work against the Jays yesterday too. He threw 7 shutout innings, allowing just 1 hit and nothing else, striking out 7.

Find the Link

Find the link between José Ramírez and Yimi García

Stats retrieved from Fangraphs and Baseball Savant