That Royals series was very frustrating. But for every sequence of games like that, there’s three others against teams like Toronto. Teams with no pitching that if you don’t tee off against, you should feel pretty distraught. And back to the Great White North we go!
TORONTO BLUE JAYS – 54-64, 5th place in the AL East (16 GB)
Only sixteen games back? Any non-leading team in the the NL East would kill for that. Sadly, the Blue Jays happen to be in the wrong league, and come into this series having lost four of their last five. Oh, and they just lost another player to injury. Not all is well with baseball in Canada, and with that lengthy disabled list, it won’t get better anytime soon.
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
1 – Jose Reyes – SS – .310/.367/.477 (in 237 PA)
2 – Maicer Izturis – 2B – .234/.288/.313
3 – Jose Bautista – RF – .265/.361/.511
4 – Edwin Encarnacion – DH – .275/.368/.535
5 – Adam Lind – 1B – .276/.345/.466
6 – Colby Rasmus – CF – .273/.335/.478
7 – Brett Lawrie – 3B – .250/.309/.435 (in 257 PA)
- After a solid 2012 season, Lawrie has fallen on bad times, thanks to injuries and some regression to the mean with his contact rate.
- His hitting’s been slightly better this year, with an increased walk rate & ISO helping his wOBA increase.
- Good defender at the hot corner. 26 total Defensive Runs Saved between ’12 and ’13.
8 – Rajai Davis – LF – .271/.321/.348 (in 225 PA)
- Speedy fourth outfielder who’s racked up 20 or more steals in each of his major-league seasons. Isn’t all that great with a bat, however.
- Davis’ 2012: .299 wOBA, 84 wRC. Davis’ 2013: .299 wOBA, 84 wRC. He’s nothing if not consistent, at least.
- Defense has really dropped off since his 2009 season with the A’s. Maximizes his value through baserunning anyway.
9 – J.P. Arencibia – C – .208/.247/.388
At first glance, Redmond’s numbers look good. High strikeout rate, doesn’t walk anyone, and his only real problem is the occasional long ball. However, his peripherals are screaming regression. His FIP is 40 points higher than his already mediocre 4.22 ERA, his opposing batter BABIP is .259, and he strands roughly 80% of the baserunners he allows, ten percentage points above league average. With Dempster opposing him, expect dingers for days.
In the battle of “Who’s The Most Broken?”, we have Lester and his meh-ish cutter versus Johnson and his batting-practice-speed fastball. Still, Johnson has some hope for improvement: a .356 opposing BABIP and a below-average 63% strand rate suggest he might have a good September. But a good August? Not against the Red Sox offense.
This game might actually go for only like 2 hours. Peavy works fast, while Buehrle has the pace of a cheetah. With Peavy, this might be the only low-scoring affair in this series, at least on the Blue Jays’ side. With Buehrle…this is gonna be fun to see. At least for the Red Sox.
- Brandon Snyder: 15-day DL (August 8th, sore elbow)
This should be a offense-filled series to watch, and relatively drama-free too, as long as no one gets easily exploitable photos taken of them or anyth-
Taking it in pic.twitter.com/gD5uAxXbU3
— Sam (@phutmasterflex) August 12, 2013