- The Blue Jays and Pirates begin a three-game set on Friday at PNC Park
- Toronto is a heavy favorite -250 favorite for the series opener
- Read on for the odds, preview, and picks
For the first time since 2017, the Toronto Blue Jays (70-59, 32-30 away) and Pittsburgh Pirates (49-81, 26-36 home) will meet this weekend in an interleague three-game series. The first pitch for Friday’s opener is scheduled for 6:35 pm ET at PNC Park.
The Jays hand Alek Manoah the ball here for his first career start against the Pirates. The hosts counter with Johan Oviedo.
Blue Jays vs Pirates Odds
|Toronto Blue Jays||-250||-1.5 (-145)||O 8 (-120)|
|Pittsburgh Pirates||+205||+1.5 (+122)||U 8 (+100)|
Odds as of September 1st at Caesars Sportsbook Pennsylvania.
The Blue Jays are a heavy -250 moneyline favorite for this contest while the game total sits at just 8.0. At +205, a $100 wager on the home-underdog Pirates would net a tidy $205 profit if Pittsburgh is able to pull the upset on Friday.
Toronto vs Pittsburgh Probable Pitchers
Toronto fans will be happy to see Manoah listed in Friday’s MLB lineups. Manoah is arguably the most reliable arm in this Blue Jays rotation in 2022. The All-Star owns a brilliant 2.60 ERA and 12-7 record in 25 starts. He’s also struck out 147 in 155.2 innings and continues to pound the strike zone on a weekly basis, allowing a mere 39 free passes. The youngster is even top-five in AL Cy Young odds at +7000.
Alek Manoah, Dirty 80mph Slider. 😨 pic.twitter.com/5jxR2XAPfs
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) August 27, 2022
His last outing was once again as solid as can be, tossing seven frames against the Angels and giving up four hits and one run while compiling eight punchouts. Manoah’s ERA lowers to 2.55 on the road this season, too.
Manoah vs Oviedo
The Pirates just called up Oviedo from the Minors and this will be his first outing for the team. The 24-year-old was acquired from the Cardinals in the Jose Quintana trade at the deadline. In 14 appearances in 22′, Oviedo has gone 2-1 with a 3.20 ERA. Friday marks just his second start of the campaign. He’s mostly featured out of the bullpen.
Pirates announce they've recalled Johan Oviedo and Cal Mitchell. Oviedo, who came over from the Cardinals in the Jose Quintana deal, will start on Friday against the Toronto Blue Jays.
— Jason Mackey (@JMackeyPG) September 1, 2022
Since the big righty didn’t register a lot of outings in the St. Louis rotation, it’s likely Pittsburgh uses him more as an opener against the Blue Jays, a lineup he’s never faced in three big league seasons.
Every Game Matters for Toronto
The Jays are currently in the heart of the Wild Card race and to be frank, every single game is crucial for Toronto right now heading into the last month. This team is just two games ahead of the Baltimore Orioles for the final WC spot and with the O’s up next on the schedule, the Blue Jays must bring their best on the weekend and sweep a poor Pirates ballclub.
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) September 1, 2022
John Schneider’s group just took two out of three from the lowly Cubs, but it wasn’t pretty. Toronto’s offensive struggles continue, as highlighted when they were swept by the Angels. The Bucs have one of the ERA’s in the MLB. Perhaps this is the perfect time for Vladimir Guerrero Jr and Co. to break out and start to swing it like we all know they can.
Pittsburgh is one of the worst teams in baseball and that isn’t changing. They’re 2-8 in their last 10 contests and just lost two out of three to the Brewers, including a 6-1 defeat in the finale on Wednesday.
Young Hayes with the play. pic.twitter.com/J426EFN0iU
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) August 31, 2022
The Bucs had just five hits on the day but actually got a decent start from Zach Thompson. It was wasted though as the bullpen completely collapsed and allowed all six runs once the right-hander exited.
Blue Jays vs Pirates Pick
It’s crunch time and the Jays know it. With Manoah on the mound, I fully believe Toronto will get it done here and provide him with no shortage of run support. Take the Jays on the runline.
Pick: Blue Jays -1.5 (-145)