Detroit Tigers at Toronto Blue Jays
|Date & Time||Thursday March 28, 2019, 3:37 PM (EDT)|
Toronto Blue Jays -148 / Detroit Tigers +138 -- O/U: 8.5
The Detroit Tigers and the Toronto Blue Jays meet in MLB opening day action from Rogers Centre on Thursday.
The Detroit Tigers come into the 2019 campaign looking for redemption after finishing the 2018 season in poor fashion, ending with a 64-98 overall record, missing out on the playoffs for the 4th straight year. Miguel Cabrera is back after playing in just 38 games due to an injury-riddled 2018 campaign and in all honesty, outside of Cabrera, there’s not much for Detroit fans to be excited about. Sure, Detroit signed Josh Harrison and the Tigers still have pieces like Nick Castellanos and JaCoby Jones, but the rotation didn’t get any better and outside of Michael Fulmer, who may now need Tommy John surgery and then there’s a bit of a drop-off going down past Matt Boyd and Jordan Zimmermann. It looks like another bleak season is on the horizon for the Tigers, but we will have to wait and see if that ends up being the case. Jordan Zimmermann will start the opener and was 7-8 with a 4.52 ERA and 111 strikeouts last season. In his career, Zimmermann is 2-1 with a 3.20 ERA and 16 strikeouts against Toronto.
The Toronto Blue Jays will also be looking for a bounce back year after finishing the 2018 campaign with an overall record of 73-89, finishing 4th in the AL East. The record also resulted in the parting of ways between Toronto and manager John Gibbons, leading to the hiring of Charlie Montoyo as his replacement. A big question mark for Toronto this season is when or even if Toronto will bring up prized top prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr. after tearing up the minor leagues last season. The Blue Jays aren’t short of talent on the big league squad however, with the likes of Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Teoscar Hernandez and Justin Smoak returning while Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez are back to lead the Blue Jays’ pitching rotation, who said goodbye to Marco Estrada last season. Only time will tell if Toronto have the pieces to make an under the radar run at the postseason this year. Marcus Stroman will start game one and was 4-9 with a 5.54 ERA and 77 strikeouts last season. In his career, Stroman is 1-1 with a 2.86 ERA and 14 strikeouts against Detroit.
Detroit is 1-5 in Zimmermann’s last 6 road starts and 28-61 in their last 89 games overall while the over is 16-4-2 in their last 22 road games. Toronto is 2-5 in their last 7 games overall and 1-4 in Stroman’s last 5 starts while the under is 5-0 in their last 5 home games. Detroit is 4-12 in the last 16 meetings between these two teams in Toronto.
You never really know what you’re going to get from some teams on opening day, but one thing I do know is that I’m really not liking the direction that Detroit’s roster is going for the 2019 season. Toronto still has a lot of solid pieces in their lineup and maybe a managerial change from last season is what the doctor ordered for the Blue Jays. Stroman wasn’t great last year but I think he’s turned a page and helps Toronto start the year on the right foot with a win on opening day so I’ll lay the juice with Toronto here.