MLB Baseball: Toronto Blue Jays at Oakland A’s

MLB Baseball:  Toronto Blue Jays at Oakland A’s&h=235&w=320&zc=1

The 2015 baseball season has been forgettable thus far for Canadian fans–likely why there’s been so much talk so early about the forthcoming NHL hockey season. The Jays are profoundly mediocre and as they head into Tuesday night action are in third place in the AL East with a 47-47 record. At least they’re big on symmetry. They’ve got a good chance to get above the ‘Mendoza Line’ tonight as they face the Oakland A’s. Oakland is having a disappointing season, particularly by their recent standards. The A’s are 43-51 and in a pitched battle with the Seattle Mariners for last place in the AL West. A good run could put them back in the mix–they’re just 8 games out of first–but they’ve shown few signs of stringing a bunch of wins together.

The pitching matchup greatly favors the Blue Jays tonight–Toronto will start veteran lefthander Mark Buehrle. Buehrle has been consistent enough this season but has been in exceptional form over his past three starts allowing a total of three earned runs in 22 innings of work. The Jays won two of those three games and they’ve won 11 of his 18 starts this season (though just 5-5 on the road). Oakland will start a talented young righthander named Kendall Graveman–he’s also been sharp in his recent outings giving up just 4 earned runs in 18 2/3 innings of work over his last three games.

The reason that this is such a great pitching matchup for Toronto? Oakland is downright awful against lefthanded pitching. The A’s hit .248 and average just 3.9 runs per game against lefthanders. Year to date, they’re 7-17 -12.7 units against southpaws. They’ve also lost their financial backers a ton of money at home where they’re under .500 for the year (20-27) and that has produced a whopping loss of -16.4 units. The A’s have won 5 of 7 head to head against Toronto on their home field but this is the first matchup of this season and the A’s are substantially weaker than in the past few seasons. Toronto isn’t a great road team by any measure–they’re 19-28 -7 units on the season–but with the A’s money burning ways at home and especially their struggles against left handers the Blue Jays should take this.


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