MLB Baseball Betting: Tampa Bay Rays at Toronto Blue Jays

MLB Baseball Betting:  Tampa Bay Rays at Toronto Blue Jays&h=235&w=320&zc=1

The Toronto Blue Jays will try to get back on the winning track and make a move at the top of the AL East as they host the Tampa Bay Rays tonight at the Rogers Centre. Toronto lost the first game of the series to the lowly Jays in downright ugly fashion. Toronto has now lost 3 of their last 4 but are still tied with the Baltimore Orioles for first place in the AL East. The Boston Red Sox are 1.5 games behind. Tampa Bay is going nowhere. They’re 17 games out of first place and a full 10 games behind the fourth place New York Yankees. Their only real goal at this point is to avoid finishing with the worst record in baseball. Currently, they’re 3 games up on the Atlanta Braves for that dubious distinction.

Tampa Bay will start left hander Blake Snell and he’s pitched well in limited action this season though the team doesn’t have much to show for it. Tampa Bay has lost 7 of his 10 starts including 3 of 4 on the road and 2 of his last 3. Snell’s numbers suggest they should have done better–he’s got a 2.95 ERA overall with a 1.400 WHIP, a 1.85 road ERA with a 1.068 WHIP and a 2.60 L3 ERA with a 1.327 WHIP. Toronto has struggled against left handed pitching this year–they couldn’t hit Drew Smyly yesterday and might repeat that futility against Snell. The Jays hit .226 against left handers averaging 3.7 runs per game compared with 4.8 runs per game and .247 overall.

Toronto will start J.A. Happ and the lefthander has been the Jays’ most consistently excellent pitcher this year. Toronto has won 17 of his 22 starts including 10 of 11 at home and 3 straight. Happ has a 3.09 ERA with a 1.146 WHIP, a 3.02 ERA and a 1.218 WHIP with a 0.95 ERA and a 0.842 WHIP in his last 3. Tampa Bay has lost money against lefthanders this year (12-14 -3.2 units) though have hit them reasonably well.

Happ has been in this situation before where he’s called upon to get a win in the midst of a downturn. He’s responded with success before and there’s no reason to think that he won’t do it again here.


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