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MLB Playoff Predictions: Top Value Total Picks

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MLB Playoff Predictions: Top Value Total Picks
The Toronto Blue Jays celebrate. Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images/AFP

Toronto Blue Jays vs. Tampa Bay Rays

Tuesday, September 29, 2020 – 5:07 PM EDT at Tropicana Field

Probable Pitchers

  • Blue Jays Shoemaker (0-1 4.71 ERA)
  • Rays Snell (4-2 3.24 ERA)

The Tampa Bay Rays finished with the best American League record and claimed their first American League East Title since 2010. However, it’s not as attractive as many see it. They beat Toronto Blue Jays this season 6 of 10 matches, however, 2 of these wins were in extra innings with walk offs. The Toronto Blue Jays have outscored Tampa Bay in the 10 matches 48-44. Blake Snell takes the mound today with an elite 32.6% strikeout rate since 2019.

The Toronto Blue Jays lead ahead of Tampa Bay with Runs, Home Runs, Hits, RBIs, OPS & perhaps other categories. The Blue Jays will start an aged Shoemaker who can command ground balls with 49.7% since 2019. The Blue Jays may piggyback with Robbie Ray after Shoemaker as he may be pulled early in this scenario.

2019-2020 Pitcher Breakdown

Skill-Interactive ERABatted Average in Balls PlayExpected Fielding Independent PitchingWalks per 9 inningsHome Runs per 9 inningsStrikeout Rate
ShoemakerSIERA 4.44BABIP 0.189XFIP 4.3BB/9 2.83HR/9 1.73K/9 7.85
SnellSIERA 3.58BABIP 0.325XFIP 3.23BB/9 3.32HR/9 1.38K/9 12.04

When we compare both pitchers from 2019, it’s surprising to see that Snell has a higher BABIP & BB/9 vs. Shoemaker.

Note, Robbie Ray is a possible piggyback pitcher today. He has an atrocious combination of BB% (Walks), GB% (Ground Balls), & HC% (Hard Contact).

Blake Snell gives up a worrisome 9% BB (walk rate) combined with a low 42% GB (ground ball) rate. We like to see the BB above 10%, and the ground ball rate below 42% to attack with offense. Snell is borderline in these 2 categories and his higher BB/9 rate may be exploitable by the Blue Jays offense.

Shoemaker gives up 8.1% walk rate while his GB% and HC% are average/healthy from 2019. Though, we are aware he’s facing regression at this stage of his career.

Brandon Lowe #8 of the Tampa Bay Rays. Julio Aguilar/Getty Images/AFP

2020 Team Offense Breakdown

Weighted On-Base AverageIsolated Power
Toronto Blue JayswOBA .331iSO .184
Tampa Bay RayswOBA .325iSO .188

In 2020 the Toronto Blue Jays when compared to the offensive production of Tampa Bay Rays lead in each category as mentioned above. The Blue Jays are known to score runs in bunches when the opportunity arises for them and as a team have a slightly favorable wOBA.

Tampa Bay Rays are known to pinch hit often to take advantage of opportunities. I’m expecting this to happen today where applicable. Every batter on the rays holds an elite HH% (hard hit) from 35.2% up to 42.7%. The Rays have an opportunity to attack Shoemaker who is fully regressing at this stage of his career while expecting a piggyback opportunity against Robbie Ray, who is susceptible to giving up Home Runs or Hard Contact to allow sacrifice RBIs. If not Robbie, the Toronto Blue Jays bullpen is not one to be feared of.

Prediction

From an MLB Betting Odds perspective the clear advantage I see here with the Toronto Blue Jays vs. Tampa Bay Rays are the opportunities these bats have against the pitchers today for run production.

Free MLB Pick: Over Total Runs 7.5 +100 at BetOnline (Visit our BetOnline review)

Over 7.5+100
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