- The Toronto Blue Jays are -145 home favorites over the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday, September 15
- Tampa Bay is 1-4 straight up over the past five games, while Toronto is 6-9 SU over its past 15 home games
- Get the Rays vs Blue Jays picks and odds, below
The battle for positioning in the American League Wild Card race between the Toronto Blue Jays (81-62, 41-30 home) and Tampa Bay Rays (79-63, 32-39 away) appears to be changing daily.
As these two AL East rivals close out a five-game series at Toronto, it’s the Blue Jays who have surged to top spot in this battle. That’s thanks to a 3-1 performance thus far in this set.
It’s the first time in a year that the Blue Jays have won a series from the Rays, and oddsmakers are liking what they are seeing. Toronto is a -145 home favorite entering the series finale. The Blue Jays are a disappointing 24-43 against the runline as a home favorite this season.
Rays vs Blue Jays Odds
|Tampa Bay Rays||+122||+1.5 (-170)||O 7.5 (-110)|
|Toronto Blue Jays||-145||-1.5 (+143)||U 7.5 (-110)|
Odds as of September 15 at Caesars Sportsbook. Get Caesars Sportsbook bonus code.
At moneyline odds of -145, the Blue Jays have an implied probability of victory of 59.18% in the MLB betting line. A successful $10 wager on Toronto would create a payout of $16.90.
First pitch at Rogers Centre is set for 3:07 pm ET on Thursday, September 15. The weather forecast is calling for clouds with 4 mph wind and a temperature of 66 degrees.
The MLB pennant odds show Toronto as the +600 third choice to capture the AL flag, while Tampa Bay is the fifth betting choice at +1400. In the World Series odds, the Blue Jays are at +1400 and the Rays at +2800.
Tampa Bay vs Toronto Probable Pitchers
In late July, Rays left-hander Shane McClanahan was the favorite in the AL Cy Young Award odds. He’s since slid to a distant third in this betting line at +3000.
The southpaw hasn’t posted a win since August 13. McClanahan will be returning from the 15-day IL for this start. He was a late scratch from his August 30 start due to left shoulder impingement, but is in Thursday’s MLB lineup for the Rays.
Shane McClanahan expected to start tomorrow against the Blue Jays. Expect slight restriction of pitches upon return due to the chronic nature of impingement syndrome and fear of overuse. Ray’s ace should return to being dominant and will be crucial for Ray’s playoff push. #Rays
— Nick Zehring PT, DPT (@nzehringDPT) September 14, 2022
Among MLB pitchers, McClanahan ranks in the top 4% in wOBA (.234), among the top 5% in hard hit percentage (30.2), in the top 6% in xERA (2.55) and xwOBA (.250) and in the top 7% in strikeout percentage (32.5). However, McClanahan is rated in the bottom 4% in Max EV (116.2).
McClanahan’s last road win was a 6-2 verdict over Toronto on July 2. In four career starts against the Blue Jays, the lefty is 1-1 with a 2.53 ERA.
McClanahan vs Gausman Stats
Blue Jays right-hander Kevin Gausman is 4-0 since August 19. At 10.6, Gausman is averaging over 10 strikeouts per nine innings for the fourth successive season. However, he’s allowed five home runs over his past 18 innings of work.
Gausman leads all AL hurlers in FIP (2.28) and with a 7.46 strikeouts/walks ratio. He rates among the top 2% of MLB pitchers in bases on balls percentage (3.8). However, Like McClanahan, Gausman is ranked in the bottom 4% in Max EV (116.6).
Kevin Gausman, Filthy Splitters. ✌️
8th and 9th Ks. pic.twitter.com/j4lY90oW1X
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) September 11, 2022
Gausman is a pedestrian 4-6 with a 4.48 ERA in 13 home starts. Each of his past four losses have come at Rogers Centre. Five of Gausman’s last six wins were road decisions.
In three starts against the Rays this season, he’s 1-1 with a 1.59 ERA. In 20 career appearances against Tampa Bay, including 18 starts, Gausman is 8-7 with a 3.61 ERA.
Batting Average vs Starting Pitchers
|Blue Jays Batters||Batting Average vs McClanahan||Rays Batters||Batting Average vs Gausman|
|Matt Chapman||.286||Yandy Diaz||1.000|
|Santiago Espinal||.286||Manuel Margot||.333|
|Vladimir Guerrero Jr||.333||David Peralta||.261|
|Teoscar Hernandez||.250||Rene Pinto||1.000|
|George Springer||.333||Taylor Walls||.333|
Toronto’s George Springer is 2-for-6 (.333) with a homer and two RBI against McClanahan. Matt Chapman is 2-for-7 (2.86) with solo homer. Santiago Espinal is also 2-for-7. Vladimir Guerrero Jr is 3-for-9 (.333) with an RBI.
George Springer is good at baseball.pic.twitter.com/096Xd5v6FZ
— MLB Metrics (@MLBMetrics) September 14, 2022
Tampa Bay’s Yandy Diaz and Rene Pinto are both 1-for-1 (1.000) when facing Gausman. Taylor Walls (2-for-6) and Manuel Margot (1-for-3) are both batting .333. Margot has driven in a run. David Peralta is 6-for-23 (.261) with three RRI,
Rays vs Blue Jays Prediction
Tampa Bay is fourth among AL clubs with 58 wins against right-handed starting pitchers. The Rays pitching staff is third in the AL in starting pitching ERA (3.36) and fourth in both WHIP (1.14) and overall staff ERA (3.36).
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) September 14, 2022
The Blue Jays are second in the AL in hits (1,271), batting average (.261) and comeback wins (38). Toronto is also third outfield assists (26) and walks allowed per nine innings (2.58). The Jays are fourth in slugging percentage (.427). But they’ve got just 17 wins against lefty starters.
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Pick: Tampa Bay Rays ML (+122)
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