David Price (18-5, 2.45 ERA) and the Toronto Blue Jays square off against Yovani Gallardo (13-11, 3.42 ERA) and the Texas Rangers in Game 1 of the Divisional Playoffs at the Rogers Centre. Action begins at 3:37 p.m. ET on Thursday, Oct. 8 and can be seen on FS1.
Price pitched 5.0 innings in his last outing, surrendering five runs (one unearned), striking out six and walking one in a 10-8 win over the Rays. Gallardo went 5.1 innings, surrendering two runs, striking out five and walking one in a 6-2 win over the Tigers in his most recent start. Shin-soo Choo (.276, 94 Rs, 22 HRs, 82 RBIs, 4 SBs) went 1 for 3 Sunday with two runs.
This one isn't expected to be close when Toronto, a substantial -225 favorite, takes on Texas. The Over/Under (O/U) is sitting at eight runs for this matchup. The Blue Jays have recorded an overall money line of +979 and have shown high-level performance as a favorite this season with a record of 72-37. Toronto is an impressive 5-1 as the favorite over its last 10 games. The Blue Jays have no trouble scoring as they lead the AL in offense with 5.5 runs per game. The Blue Jays are one of the best in the AL in terms of hits with a phenomenal 9.1 per game. Toronto leads the whole AL in walks, earning an average of 3.5 per game. Toronto's pitching staff has been doing poorly against opposing offenses during the last 10 games, allowing an average of 5.4 runs per game, well above its season average of 4.1. The Blue Jays are the top team in the AL at limiting hits during home games, allowing only 7.7 hits per contest to their opponents this season.
In games where it is the underdog, Texas has a 59-55 record and an overall money line of +2,979.
The Blue Jays lead the season series, 4-2. The Blue Jays have a 73-54 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Gallardo takes the mound. Price (LHP) will be on the hill against the Rangers, who have a 34-30 record against left-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - Tor, O/U - Over
For the 14th time this season, the Blue Jays registered at least two errors in a game.
The Blue Jays are coming into this game after allowing one walk during their last outing. The Rangers have a 10-18 record when opponents give up that many walks or fewer.
When they are outhit, the Blue Jays are 13-55. The Rangers have a 19-57 record when opponents outhit them.
Ranking first in home runs, Toronto has hit 232 this season. Texas ranks 11th with 172 home runs.
Toronto and Texas both rank in the top five of the league in hits. Toronto sits at fourth with 9.12 hits per game and Texas ranks fifth with 8.75.
Ranking first in on-base plus slugging percentage, Toronto has an OPS of .800 this season. Texas ranks seventh with an OPS of .741.
The Rangers are 45-56 in games where they allow one or more home runs. The Blue Jays are 55-50 when they allow at least one homer.