The Toronto Blue Jays and New York Yankees are set to face off in a three-game weekend series starting Friday night inside Yankee Stadium
Toronto Blue Jays at New York Yankees
Toronto picked up a 5-2 victory in its series finale against Texas to take the series, 3-1, while also dodging a potential hamstring injury from star outfielder Jose Bautista. He suffered tightness in his hamstring after a diving catch in the fifth inning, but was able to run the bases fine when he singled in the sixth. “We dodged what could have been an unfortunate incident,” manager John Farrell stated. “It was a scary moment, but at the same time we’re fortunate that nothing is broken.” The heart of the Blue Jays order continues to provide a ton of offense, as Bautista has reached base in 21 of his 22 games this season, while Lind finished the four-game series with the Rangers hitting .471 with three home runs and eight RBIs. Toronto is 8-10 versus right-handed starters this season.
Blue Jays starting pitcher Ricky Romero is 1-3 with a 3.00 ERA in five starts this season, allowing hitters to hit for a combined .230 average. The left-hander will be making his third appearance on the road, producing an 0-2 mark and 5.11 ERA. Romero will be facing the Yankees for the seventh time and has gone 2-2 with a 5.70 ERA. During his last start, he allowed just five hits while striking out 10, but received no run support. “I felt great,” Romero stated. “After giving up the two runs and you put up zeroes after that, I think you leave the game feeling pretty good.”
New York salvaged a split of a four-game series against the Chicago White Sox with a dominating 12-3 victory on Thursday. The Yankees were led offensively by the play of outfielder Nick Swisher, who provided his first home run and collected four RBIs. “I definitely had been working about that first home run,” Swisher commented. “I had been trying a lot that last week.” He may need to provide the same type of output when the team faces Romero, as shortstop Derek Jeter and first baseman Mark Teixeira are a combined 4-for-28 against the left-hander. New York is 80-50 versus left-handed starters the past three years.
Yankees starting pitcher Freddy Garcia will be making his third start of the season, coming in with a 1-0 mark and 0.69 ERA. The right-hander last started on April 24 at Baltimore, tossing 6.0 scoreless innings in the team’s 6-3 win in 11 innings. He has held opponents to two earned runs or less in each of his last seven regular season starts dating back to last season. Garcia has garnered a 6-5 record and 6.10 ERA in 14 career starts versus Toronto.
Bettors will be interested in backing the Blue Jays due to their 5-2 mark in Romero’s last seven starts as a road underdog, while the Yankees are 1-4 in Friday games.