Minnesota Twins (66-62 SU, 66-62 RL, 56-63-9 O/U) vs Toronto Blue Jays (60-68 SU, 58-70 RL, 60-62-6 O/U)
When: 1:05 PM EDT, Sunday, August 27, 2017
Where: Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario
Lines: Toronto -127/ Minnesota +117
The American League Central will battle it out with the American League East as the Minnesota Twins take on the Toronto Blue Jays at the Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario in game three of their three-game set. The Over is 5-1 the last six games between these teams here in Toronto. Pitching Probables: The Twins will be sending out Kyle Gibson (7-10, 5.76 ERA), while the Blue Jays will send out Joe Biagini (3-8, 5.11 ERA).
The Ageless One Keeps Rolling
The Minnesota Twins just lost their last two games in Chicago against a bad White Sox team, but they were able to bounce back with a strong 6-1 win over the Blue Jays in game one of this series. Their pitching has not been great this year, but they have had their moments and one of those moments has been Bartolo Colon, who just keeps on chugging along. He got the start in game one of this series and had a strong outing as he allowed just one ER on nine hits in 6.2 innings of work in the win. It still has not been a great year for him as he is 6-10 with a 6.35 ERA so far. He has pitched much better for the Twins than the Braves this year as he was 2-8 with an 8.13 ERA in 13 starts for the Braves, while here at Minnesota he is now 4-2 with a 4.04 ERA in eight starts. They will need him to continue to pitch well down the stretch if they hope to get into the playoffs. Taking the hill for the Twins will be Kyle Gibson and he has gone 7-10 with a 5.76 ERA in 22 starts on the year, including 1-1 with a 4.02 ERA in his last three starts and 4-3 with a 4.83 ERA in 10 starts on the road. Gibson has gone 6-8 with a 5.67 ERA in 26 career starts in August and 16-24 with a 4.83 ERA in 52 day starts, while against the Blue Jays he has gone 1-1 with a 4.94 ERA in four starts, including 0-1 with a 10.80 ERA in two starts here at the Rogers Centre.
The Twins have been a below average offensive team so far as they come in ranked 19th in the league in scoring, putting up 4.74 rpg, while also ranking 17th in hitting at .255 and 19th in homers with 153. On the mound they have been poor so far as they come in ranked 22nd in the league in ERA at 4.67, while also ranking 19th in WHIP at 1.38.
Blue Jays Just Never Got It Going This Year
It really has been a lost season for the Blue Jays this year as they never were able to get on track. They have spent much of the year in the basement in the American League East and it is getting worse for them as they have now lost six of their last seven games after falling in game one of this series. The offense was the biggest problem for them this year, but now the pitching is struggling as they have allowed 5.29 rpg in their last seven games. J.A. Happ got the start in game one and he allowed five ERs on eight hits in six innings of work to fall to 6-10 on the year with a 4.10 ERA. The Jays are now 34-30 here at home for the year. Joe Biagini will get the nod for the Blue Jays in this one and he has gone 3-8 with a 5.11 ERA in 37 games overall, including 2-7 with a 4.67 ERA in 11 starts ands 1-2 with a 7.71 ERA in his last three starts. They have been his only 11 starts of his career. Biagini is 2-5 with a 4.95 ERA in 18 games (six starts) here at home for the year and this will be the first time in his career that he has faced the Twins. Biagini was 30-31 with 4.02 ERA in 93 games (90 starts) over five seasons in the minors.
Toronto has been a poor offensive team this year so far as they come in ranked 26th in the league in scoring, putting up 4.26 rpg, while also ranking 29th in hitting at .241 and 13th in homers with 174. On the mound they have been average so far this year as they come in ranked 18th in the league in ERA at 4.53, while also ranking 22nd in WHIP at 1.40.
- 13-5 in their last 18 games vs. a starter with a WHIP greater than 1.30
- 6-1 in their last 7 road games vs. a team with a winning home record
- 2-7 in their last nine vs. the American League Central
- 1-5 in their last six games vs. a right-handed starter
The Minnesota Twins are trying very hard to stay in the race for a wildcard berth, while the Blue Jays would love to play spoiler as it is about the only thing they have left to play for. Both starters have been bad this year, but Biagini has been a bit worse of late as he has a 7.71 ERA in his last three starts, while Gibson has allowed three ERs or less in each of his last five starts. The Twins have the edge on offense and a slight edge on the mound and they need this game far more than the Twins, plus they have played well on the road where they have gone 35-27 so far. It all adds up to a nice win for the Twins.
Pick: Minnesota +127
The Blue Jays have had a rough year, while the Twins have gone from the worst team in baseball last year to a playoff contender this year. The Twins will send out Kyle Gibson in this one and he has struggled this year, but he has allowed three ERs or less in each of his last five starts and the Jays have averaged just 4.13 rpg here at home. The Jays will be sending out Joe Biagini and while he has struggled in his career as a starter, I see him being able to slow down the Twins in this one. Blue Jay home games have averaged just 8.9 rpg, while Minnesota road games have put up just 9.08 rpg. Take the Under in this one.