Cleveland Indians vs. Toronto Blue Jays Prediction & Pick
Date: Thursday, August 5
Time: 7:07pm ET
Where: Rogers Centre
Cleveland Indians vs. Toronto Blue Jays Probable Pitchers:
- Indians: Tristian McKenzie (1-4, 6.11 ERA)
- Blue Jays: Ross Stripling (4-6, 4.75 ERA)
Cleveland Indians vs. Toronto Blue Jays Prediction
The Indians are a game back from .500 and are falling off in the AL Central standings behind the Chicago White Sox. Last night, the Blue Jays stormed out for eight runs in the first three innings against JC Mejia and there’s reason to believe they can rock Tristian McKenzie in tonight’s game against the Indians.
McKenzie is 1-4 with the Indians on the season with a 6.11 ERA. He’s shown flashes of excellence but hasn’t put it all together this season.
He’s struck out 11.23 batters per nine innings but also walked 6.39 batters per nine innings. In percentages, that’s 28.5 percent strikeouts but also 16.2 percent walks on the season.
McKenzie isn’t easy to hit either. He’s allowed a .199 average and has a WHIP of 1.44. His FIP is lower than his ERA from 6.11 to 5.72, but that FIP at 5.72 is still really bad.
As of late, McKenzie has struggled against righties. In his last 44 plate appearances against righties, McKenzie has a wOBA of .353 with an ISO of .366 despite striking out 25 percent of batters. He’s also walked 6.8 percent of those batters and is inducing just 33.3 percent of ground balls.
The Blue Jays stack up nicely as they’ll have at least seven righties in the lineup including a stack of powerful righties in George Springer, Vlad Guerrero Jr., Marcus Semien, Bo Bichette, and Teoscar Hernandez. Each one of those batters has an ISO above .210 against righties in the last 30 days.
This is an offense that is known for hitting the ball hard and at the top of the lineup, they’ve limited strikeouts with only Springer and Hernandez striking out more than 22 percent of the time in the top seven of the batting order.
McKenzie struggled to get strikeouts in his last time out against the White Sox where he allowed four hits, six runs, three home runs, three walks and struck out just two batters using 83 pitches. He also allowed 13 fly balls to just one ground ball.
All it will take is a couple walks and a blast from the Blue Jays against McKenzie and while he’s hard to hit, the more wild he gets, the better chance for the Blue Jays to reach their first five team total.
On the other hand, Ross Stripling will take the mound against the Indians. Stripling hasn’t been all that great either with an xFIP of 5.38. He is striking out under 20 percent of batters in his last 30 days along with eight percent of walks.
Lefties and righties have a wOBA of above .420 and an ISO of above .400 against Stripling in his last 30 days. He’s giving up 50 percent hard contact and a line drive percentage of 23.9.
The Indians lineup doesn’t profile well but they should be able to at least tack some runs across the board against Stripling who has been awful as of late. We’ll likely see six righties in the lineup and Stripling has really struggled with righties when it comes to strikeouts. He’s only struck out 15.4 percent of his last 26 right-handed batters and is allowing plenty of hard and line drive contact to righties.
Stripling has allowed just three earned runs in his last two starts going five or more innings in each start. In those games, he’s allowed 20 fly balls to just 11 ground balls and has just seven strikeouts to one walk.
The Indians aren’t a talented team but they’re only hitting ground balls 40.3 percent of the time and smacking 22.9 percent line drives as a team in the last 30 days against righties.
Let’s take the over 1.5 on the team total for the Indians against Stripling.