Game 24 Lineups and Outlook
Not gonna lie. It feels good, man.For the first time in ages the Rays battled last night to ultimately walk it off on a Curt Casali single. I couldn’t help but feel that last night’s win was a game that we lost so, soo many times last year. Our bullpen held up thanks to the implacable Erasmo Ramirez. Just yesterday I mentioned that it might be smart to hide him from lefties in high leverage spots. Glad to see him pitch well, but the efficiency didn’t stop as Xavier Cedeno came in to get Ryan Goins with the go ahead run on second base. Our bullpen didn’t do this last year since all the good relievers had been used by the ninth. I could get used to seeing that.
The Jays are pretty heavy favorites today and I’m not sure if Vegas caught up to that. Marcus Stroman is a fantastic pitcher who I think is an even tougher matchup for this new hyper-aggressive mentality. He wants to get quick outs and he’ll do it by making you think you’ve got something before it moves to a crappier part of the barrel. I’d expect a bunch of weak contact and more frustrating from the offense.
On the other side we see another bad matchup. In his time with the Rays Jake Odorizzi has shown a pronounced reverse-split with righties (.325 wOBA) hitting him much better than lefties (.278 wOBA). The Blue Jays have a few very good righties that profile as a real strength today so Jake will really need to be on his game today. He was nibble crazy against the Orioles, another very strong lineup, and like those Orioles, I would expect them to force Jake into the zone where they will be ready and waiting. He has always talked, but not walked, about the curveball being an important pitch. Today more than ever he will need to find a way to steal strikes. Get behind against these guys and you’re begging for a big inning.