Rays vs. Blue Jays (July 2): Top AL arms set for duel in Toronto

By | July 2, 2022

Two of the top AL Cy Young Award contenders will take the mound today in Toronto as Shane McClanahan and the Tampa Bay Rays face Kevin Gausman and the Toronto Blue Jays in the first game of a Saturday doubleheader.

The Blue Jays have taken the first two games of the five-game series, winning 4-1 on Thursday and following that up last night with a 9-2 win.

After losing four games in a row, the Rays could certainly benefit from positioning themselves for a doubleheader sweep. But they will need McClanahan to deliver another strong effort and for the bats to make more noise against Gausman than they did against either Yusei Kikuchi or Jose Berrios.

Tampa Bay Rays vs. Toronto Blue Jays Betting Odds and Matchup Information

Matchup Information

  • Matchup: Tampa Bay Rays (40-36, 15-19 away, 4th in the AL East) vs. Toronto Blue Jays (44-33, 25-15 home, 2nd in the AL East)
  • Venue & Location: Rogers Centre (Toronto, Canada)
  • Date: Saturday, July 2, 2022
  • Game Time: 12:07 p.m. Eastern Time

Rays vs. Blue Jays Pitching Matchup

  • Tampa Bay Rays: Shane McClanahan (2022: 15 starts, 8-3, 1.77 ERA)
  • Toronto Blue Jays: Kevin Gausman (2022: 15 starts, 6-6, 2.93 ERA)

Rays vs. Blue Jays Odds

Game odds are via FanDuel. This article may also feature odds from our other top reviewed and recommended online sportsbooks.

Moneyline

  • Tampa Bay Rays +116
  • Toronto Blue Jays -136

Over/Under

  • OVER 7 (-128)
  • UNDER 7 (+104)

Run Line

  • Tampa Bay Rays +1.5 (-205)
  • Toronto Blue Jays -1.5 (+168)

Which Gausman Will Show Up for the Blue Jays?

While Gausman (+1700) comes in sixth in the latest AL Cy Young odds, behind co-favorites McClanahan and Justin Verlander (both at +290), teammate Alek Manoah (+650), Gerrit Cole (+850), and Shohei Ohtani (+1200), he could use a real run of consistent excellence after some recent ups and downs.

Gausman did finish June with by pitching seven shutout innings and striking out ten in a win over the Boston Red Sox this past Monday, which was just his third quality start in eight home starts.

In his previous two home starts, he had allowed seven runs in 2.1 innings against the Orioles and five runs in 3.2 innings against the Minnesota Twins.

His season splits are not favorable for this situation, as his day and home splits numbers are worse than his night and away numbers.

2022 Season Splits for Kevin Gausman

  • Home (eight starts): 3-3, 3.95 ERA, 1.39 WHIP, .300 OBA
  • Away (seven starts): 3-3, 2.00 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, .238 OBA
  • Day (seven starts): 3-3, 3.76 ERA, 1.44 WHIP, .310 OBA
  • Night (eight starts): 3-3, 2.37 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, .234 OBA

Of the five times that he has allowed three or more runs this season, four have been at home. For what it’s worth, the lone one on the road came against the Rays on May 13, when he allowed four runs (three earned) in seven innings in a 5-2 loss.

If he gives up three or four runs today, it doesn’t bode well for the Blue Jays, given McClanahan’s numbers this season. Since allowing three runs twice in his first five starts, he has allowed 3+ runs only once in his last ten starts.

McClanahan, who is bidding for his tenth straight quality start, has allowed just nine earned runs in his last ten starts and has allowed just 40 hits and nine walks in 64.1 innings in that stretch, during which he has a 7-1 record.

And while his sample size with on the road is fairly small–this will be just his fifth road start this season–his road and day numbers edge out his home and night numbers.

2022 Season Splits for Shane McClanahan

  • Home (11 starts): 7-2, 1.88 ERA, 0.87 WHIP, .193 OBA
  • Away (four starts): 1-1, 1.48 ERA, 0.74 WHIP, .157 OBA
  • Day (seven starts): 4-1, 1.42 ERA, 0.81 WHIP, .185 OBA
  • Night (eight starts): 4-2, 2.11 ERA, 0.85 WHIP, .182 OBA

Tampa Bay Rays vs. Toronto Blue Jays Prediction and Best Bets

Rays vs. Blue Jays Prediction: Rays to win

Rays vs. Blue Jays Best Bets: Rays ML (+120 at PointsBet), Rays team total over 3.5 runs (+104 at FanDuel) & Blue Jays team total under 3.5 runs (+104 at BetRivers)

For the season, Tampa Bay is hitting .256 against left-handed pitchers, compared to .225 against righties.

While they aren’t as stout or stacked offensively as the three teams above them in the AL East, it was still a bit surprising that they were shut down on Thursday by Kikuchi, who had entered that start with a 9.98 ERA in June and 17 earned runs (20 total) in his first five June starts.

I’m picking the Rays more because of what McClanahan has been doing, but Tampa Bay’s bats should have a better time against Gausman than they did against Kikuchi. And if they can score three or more runs, they should pick up the win, as they are 8-1 in McClanahan’s nine starts in which they scored at least three runs.

If you’d like to make a little investment in the props market, the Rays have five players who are hitting over .300 against lefties: Ji-Man Choi (.464 in 28 at-bats), Harold Ramirez (.377 in 61 at-bats), Manuel Margot (.372 in 43 at-bats), Francisco Mejia (.333 in 42 at-bats), and Wander Franco (.320 in 50 at-bats).

Margot is currently sidelined with a knee injury but keep an eye out for the lineup to see which options you can back to have a multi-hit game.

The post Rays vs. Blue Jays (July 2): Top AL arms set for duel in Toronto appeared first on Betting News.

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