The Baltimore Orioles and Toronto Blue Jays are both under .500 for the season and open up a three-game series Tuesday night at the Rogers Centre
Baltimore Orioles at Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore is likely not looking forward to its three-game series north of the border, as the club has dropped 23 of 25 meetings against Toronto at the Rogers Centre. The Orioles haven’t beaten the Blue Jays on the road since August 7, 2009. The club’s offense will need to pick it up in order to change things, scoring just 57 runs in the past 15 games, while plating five runs or more just twice over that span. Baltimore has also been unable to take advantage of an advantageous schedule, playing 27 of 30 games against teams with a losing record, posting an 11-10 mark over that span. In 10 opportunities to play following an off day, the Orioles are 5-5 in that situation this year.
Orioles starting pitcher Chris Jakubauskas is 1-0 with a 4.58 ERA in six appearances (one start) this season and is coming off a solid performance last time out. He tallied a 4-0 home win over the Athletics, tossing five scoreless innings and allowing just three hits. He has spent most of the year in the bullpen, but gets another opportunity to start due to the club resting regular starter Zach Britton. “I don’t want Jakubauskas to sit around forever, and it’ll give us an opportunity to give Zach a little blow,” Showalter said. Jakubauskas has two strikeouts and zero earned runs in 2 1/3 career innings of work against Toronto.
Toronto has lost four straight games and is coming off a humiliating sweep to the Boston Red Sox at home. “Kind of a one-sided series,” said Blue Jays manager John Farrell. The Blue Jays were outscored 35-6 by the Red Sox over the weekend, but will likely bounce back in trying to capture its 15th consecutive home win over tonight’s opponent. The bullpen could use a lengthy outing by tonight’s scheduled starter after logging 12 1/3 innings against the Red Sox, giving up 14 runs and 21 hits. Offensively, the team will likely lean upon outfielder Jose Bautista, who is batting .382 with seven homers and 16 RBIs in his last 16 home games against Baltimore. Toronto is 22-27 versus right-handed starters this year.
Blue Jays starting pitcher Carlos Villanueva has a personal winning streak of eight consecutive victories dating back to last season. The right-hander has received plenty of run support over the last four games, as the offense has scored 33 runs over that span. Villanueva has tallied a 1-0 mark and 4.00 ERA in eight home outings (one start), issuing just five walks and striking out 16 in 18 frames. He is 1-0 with a 2.89 ERA in his career against Baltimore.
Bettors will likely back the Orioles due to their 14-5 record versus a team with a losing record, while the Blue Jays are 0-5 in their last five home games