The 2020 MLB playoffs get underway this afternoon. It’s only fitting that today’s free pick is a Blue Jays Rays pick.
There are four games scheduled and the Tampa Bay Rays host the Toronto Blue Jays in the third game of the day. These two AL East rivals are very familiar with each other.
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Game: Toronto Blue Jays (0-0) vs. Tampa Bay Rays (0-0)
When: 5:00 PM ET, Tuesday, September 29th, 2020
Where: Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida
Current Line: Jays (+175) vs. Rays (-190) Total: 7.5
Probable Pitchers: Matt Shoemaker (TOR) vs. Blake Snell (TB)
Blue Jays Surprise Starter
Shoemaker is going to start for the Blue Jays, but he’s not expected to go deep into the game. He only started six games this season, finishing with an 0-1 record (4.71 ERA and 1.08 WHIP).
Three of Shoemaker’s starts came against the Rays. He pitched 15 innings against the Rays during the regular season, allowing 6 earned runs, 10 hits and 17 strikeouts.
I like this move by the Jays, as Shoemaker has had success pitching against the Rays.
However, the Jays only won one of Shoemaker’s starts against the Rays.
Ace for Rays
Snell has pitched against the Blue Jays twice this season. In the first game, Snell only pitched two innings. He gave up 3 hits and 2 walks, but no earned runs and he struck out five batters.
In the second game, Snell went 5.2 innings, allowing 4 hits and 2 earned runs. He struck out 9 in the game. In 13 career starts against the Blue Jays, Snell has a 2.81 ERA.
Head-to-Head Series Was Close
These teams played each other ten times during the shortened regular season.
Tampa Bay barely won the head-to-head regular season series (6-4). Four of the games between these two teams needed extra innings. This series will be closer than most expect.
The over/under in this series went 6-3-1 this season. When either Snell or Shoemaker started this season in this series, four of the five games went over the total.
Both of these line-ups have power and could chase one of the starting pitchers quickly.
Blue Jays Rays Pick is the OVER
The Blue Jays moneyline looks tempting at +175 and I may have a piece of that before first pitch, but my best bet in this match-up is on over 7.5 runs at even money (+100).
This is a low total and I really don’t trust the Blue Jays pitching. It’s just too juicy not to go this way for my Blue Jays Rays pick at AskTheBookie.com. Shoemaker has had success, but he isn’t going to be in long and the bullpen is going to have to hold up for more innings than usual.
I think the young Blue Jays will be pumped to get some playoff experience.
They have nothing to lose, and if Cavan Biggio, Bo Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero can get hot in this short three-game series, the Rays could end up being in trouble.
Blue Jays Rays Pick: OVER 7.5
Pick by Scott Jack