- Tampa Bay is looking for its fourth win in a row against division rival Toronto
- Rays vs Blue Jays Game Information
- Blue Jays vs Rays Probable Starting Pitchers
- Chapman is starting to heat up for the Blue Jays
- Diaz is a surprise run producer for the Rays
- Who's Hot?
- Who's Not?
- Blue Jays vs Rays Injury Update
- Blue Jays vs Rays Betting Analysis
Tampa Bay is Looking for Fourth Consecutive Against Division Rival Toronto
Few introductions will be necessary when a two-game series begins on Tuesday between the visiting Toronto Blue Jays and the Tampa Bay Rays. The teams have already met eight times this season with Tampa Bay winning five of those games. The Blue Jays vs Rays series game favor visiting Toronto in Tuesday’s opener with the best moneyline of +325 coming with Toronto winning by at least four runs.
Although Toronto is 12 games behind the New York Yankees in the American League East, the Blue Jays standings have the best record among the non-division leaders in the AL. Tampa Bay is tied with Seattle for the second-best mark in the race for the wild-card spots for the postseason.
Rays vs Blue Jays Game Information
- Matchup: Toronto 57-45 (second in the AL East) Tampa Bay 54-48 (third in the AL East)
- Location: Tropicana Field, Tampa, Florida
- Television: Tuesday’s game will be on the MLB Network
Blue Jays vs Rays Probable Starting Pitchers
- Tuesday: Kevin Gausman (Blue Jays) Drew Rasmussen (Rays)
- Wednesday: Yusei Kikuchi (Blue Jays) TBA
Chapman Starting to Heat Up for Blue Jays
It has not been the smoothest of debuts for veteran third baseman Matt Chapman.
Chapman had a .201 batting average heading into June and he was striking out every 3.4 at-bats.
Chapman, who spent the first five seasons of his career with the Oakland Athletics, began to get into a rhythm in June with a .264 batting average and .517 slugging percentage. However, it wasn’t until the calendar flipped to July that he really got rolling.
Chapman hit .325 with nine home runs and a .699 slugging percentage. That is the highest slugging mark he has had in any month during his time in the majors and the nine home runs tie the most he had in any one month. Over the last week, he is hitting .471 with four of his last eight hits being home runs. Chapman’s nine home runs were tied for the second most among AL hitters in July with his 22 RBIs ranked third.
The best could be yet to come as Chapman, a career .244 hitter has a .274 mark in August with 38 home runs and 84 RBIs. Perhaps that is why the Blue Jays vs Rays series game favor Toronto to be the first team to score two, three, and four runs in Tuesday’s opener.
Diaz, Surprise Scoring Threat for Rays
Tampa Bay seems to find unlikely hitting stars that were discarded by other teams.
Earlier in the season, Isaac Parades delivered unexpected power for the Rays. More recently, it has been player Yandy Diaz doing the heavy lifting. Diaz will try to help defy what the Blue Jays vs Rays series game are projecting.
Diaz did have a .283 average in 88 games with Cleveland during the 2017 and 2018 seasons. He never had more than seven RBIs in any one month during his time with Cleveland.
In 94 at-bats in July, Diaz had 11 doubles and 18 RBIs. The doubles mark is the most in any month while the RBIs fell two short of his career high of 20 sets last September. Diaz had nine multi-hit games during July as he briefly went over the .300 batting mark on the season.
Tampa Bay went 7-2 when Diaz had at least two hits in a game last month. The run started with three consecutive two-hit efforts in the final three games of a five-game set with Toronto.
- Jason Adam, Tampa Bay P: Adam allowed one run and five hits over 10 innings of work in July He hasn’t given up a hit in his last three appearances.
- Vladimir Guerrero, Toronto 1B: The power numbers weren’t there, but Guerrero hit .340 with 17 RBIs during the month of July. He had almost as many extra-base hits (13) as strikeouts (15) in July.
- Josh Lowe, Tampa Bay IF: Has a seven-game hitting streak and at least one hit in 12 of his last 13 games. He is hitting .326 during that time to raise his average from .170 to .221
- Jordan Romano, Toronto P: Romano hasn’t allowed a run in his last five appearances. He has given up one hit and struck out six in 5.2 innings of work. He has also gone 5 for 5 in save opportunities.
- Shawn Armstrong, Tampa Bay P: Armstrong allowed 18 hits in 12 innings in 10 appearances out of the bullpen during the month of July.
- Yusei Kikuchi, Toronto P: Kikuchi had a 6.14 earned run average in two outings in July. He walked six hitters in 7.1 innings.
- George Springer, Toronto OF: After recording nine hits during a five-game span, Springer has one hit in his last 12 at-bats with four strikeouts and just one walk.
- Trevor Walls, Tampa Bay IF: Walls has one hit in his last 15 at-bats with eight strikeouts during that stretch.
Blue Jays vs Rays Injury Update
Outfielder George Springer missed Toronto’s last game with an elbow injury and he is questionable for Tuesday’s game. Relievers Tyler Saucedo (hip) and Andrew Vasquez (ankle) are expected back by mid-August.
For Tampa Bay, catcher Mike Zunino (shoulder), starting pitcher Tyler Glasnow (elbow), and reliever Andrew Kittredge (elbow) are out for the season. Starting pitcher Josh Fleming (oblique), as well as relievers Nick Anderson (elbow) and JT Chargois (oblique), are not anticipated to be back until mid-August. Infielder Wander Franco (wrist) is not expected to return to the field until next month.
Blue Jays vs Rays Betting Analysis
Toronto is 7-2 with a team ERA of 3.11 over the last nine games so it is no wonder that the Blue Jays vs Rays series game are in the favor of visiting Toronto despite a 23-24 record on the road this season. Tampa Bay is 3-7 with a 4.19 ERA over the last 10 games.
Vlad Guerrero has driven in eight of Toronto’s 28 runs against the Rays this season. Probable starting pitchers Gausman and Kikuchi have a 2.40 ERA in three starts against Tampa Bay this season. They have struck out 19 in 15 innings of work.
For Tampa Bay, Harold Ramirez is hitting .333 with five extra-base hits in eight games against Toronto. Rasmussen, the starter on Tuesday, has a 1.74 ERA in two starts against the Blue Jays in 2022.
The total has gone under in each of Toronto’s last five games, including nine of the last 11 times Toronto played in Tampa. The total has gone over four times in Tampa Bay’s last six games.Follow us on Twitter