Toronto has lost five in a row and continues to slip in the AL East standings.  “Terrible, awful, we played terrible,” manager Cito Gaston sharing his disgust after the Blue Jays’ 6-1 defeat on Thursday.  The Blue Jays now stand at an even 40-40 on the year and are currently 1-6 on its current 10-day, 10-game road trip.  Gaston’s club is 20-23 away from Rogers Centre on the season, but the team ranks second in the majors with 48 home runs on the road.  Toronto was held without a home run while being swept in Cleveland, which is a surprising tale with the lineup leading the majors with 115 home runs.  Facing divisional opponents hasn’t helped the fourth-place Jays this season, posting an even 12-12 mark in the first 24 games.

Blue Jays starting pitcher Brett Cecil is 7-5 with a 4.39 ERA in 13 starts this season, but is suffering from a three-game losing streak.  He has produced awful results over that span, allowing 16 earned runs and 18 hits over 15.2 innings.  Before this recent streak, the left-hander tallied five straight victories.  Cecil is 5-2 with a 3.11 ERA in seven road outings, holding opponents to a .198 combined average.  In three previous starts against the Yankees, he is 1-1 with a 6.19 ERA.  The Yankees may be well-served in sitting left-handed batters against him, as he’s allowed just a single home run against them in 2010.

New York avoided being swept at home by the Seattle Mariners, with starting pitcher C.C. Sabathia recording a 4-2 victory on Thursday afternoon.  The win improved his record to 11-0 with a 2.03 ERA in his past 15 starts at Yankee Stadium.  “There’s no question he’s been pitching great for us,” third baseman Alex Rodriguez said.  The Yankees continue to provide a great effort during day games, tallying a 19-9 mark.  Friday’s game will be the first of nine home games versus Toronto, as the team compiled a 6-3 mark at the stadium against the Jays last season.  New York has not lost a home season series versus Toronto since 1999, having won 34 of the last 55 since the start of the 2004 season.

Yankees starting pitcher A.J. Burnett is 6-7 with a 5.25 ERA in 16 starts in 2010, as he brings in a five-game losing streak of his own.  He has allowed 29 earned runs and 35 hits in 23 innings of work.  The right-hander is 3-2 with a 3.46 ERA in six home starts, which is similar to his 5-3 record and 3.51 ERA in 16 starts at Yankee Stadium last season.  Burnett currently possesses a 2-2 record and 4.29 ERA in five career starts versus the Blue Jays, surrendering six home runs in 35.2 innings.

Bettors have the green light in playing Friday’s contest over the total, with the Jays being 8-4 O/U as a road underdog of +125 to +150, while the Yankees stand at a remarkable 15-5 O/U at home with the total placed at 9 to 9.5.  The total currently stands at 9.5 at