Tampa Bay Rays vs. Toronto Blue Jays Free Pick - 8/17/13
Toronto Blue Jays (56-66) at Tampa Bay Rays (69-51)
MLB Baseball: Saturday, August 17, 2013 at 7:10 pm (Tropicana Field)
JA Happ (L) (2-2) (5.114) vs. Fausto Carmona (R) (6-12) (4.946)
The Line: Tampa Bay Rays -163 / Toronto Blue Jays +153 --- Over/Under: 8.5 See the Latest Odds
TV: SNET, SunSports
The Tampa Bay Rays and Toronto Blue Jays square off in game two of their series Saturday.
I don't like to write off any team in the rugged American League East but the numbers certainly don't favor the Blue Jays. It would take a huge run and plenty of things to fall their way for Toronto to challenge for the division crown and Friday's 5-4 defeat at Tropicana Field was a step in the wrong direction. RA Dickey didn't have his knuckle ball working with four runs plated on six hits in seven frames before Aaron Loup allowed a run in the 9th for the loss. The bats totaled 13 hits and walked twice with Anthony Gose knocking in two runs but the Jays missesd out on a few chances. Left hander JA Happ draws Saturday's starting assignment versus Tampa Bay. Happ comes in off of a 5-1 loss (ND) to Oakland where he gave up a single run on three hits and a pair of BB in seven innings.
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Tampa Bay had dropped six in a row to knock them out of the top spot in the American League East, but have now won three in a row after knocking off the Blue Jays Friday. The Rays can be a tough team to handle with a little bit of hitting and a little pitching and that's what we saw Friday. A struggling Jeremy Hellickson stopped the bleeding with three runs given up on nine hits and a free pass through six innings pitched while Fernando Rodney tossed a scoreless 9th to get the win. The offense did plenty of damage on eight hits and and four free passes that saw Matt Joyce go solo while Jose Lobaton knocked in two including the game winner in the 9th. Roberto Hernandez will get the ball in game number two against the visiting Blue Jays. Hernandez has been the weak link in the Rays rotation, going 2-6 with a pair of no decisions over his last ten outings.
This isn't the greatest of match ups from a pitching point of view so in this case it boils down to hitting and who has the better team and that has me looking at the Rays but that's a lot of juice for Hernandez...