MLB Baseball Picks: Toronto Blue Jays at Oakland Athletics
Friday, August 03, 2012
The Toronto Blue Jays are sliding out of the playoff race and need a patchwork lineup to start producing runs in order to reverse the trend. The Blue Jays will look to avoid a season-high sixth consecutive defeat when they continue a 10-game road trip against the Oakland Athletics on Friday night. Toronto managed only one run in the series opener and has been held to a total of eight runs during its five-game skid to drop six games behind AL wild card leader Oakland.
The Athletics have also been struggling offensively, scoring only six runs in four games prior to Thursday's 4-1 victory. One big plus for Oakland was seeing Josh Reddick bust out of his slump with a pair of hits, including his team-high 23rd home run. Reddick had been mired in an 0-for-21 skid entering the game. Dan Straily, the latest in a seemingly endless supply of great arms for the Athletics, will make his major league debut Friday night.
Cecil has lost three consecutive starts but has not received much support from his teammates, who have scored only four runs in that span. He made one mistake last time out and it cost him, giving up a three-run homer among his four hits in 6 2/3 innings of a 4-1 loss vs. Detroit. He is 2-3 with a 2.83 ERA and 1.03 WHIP in five career starts against Oakland.
Straily will get the chance to see if his dazzling strikeout numbers translate to the majors. He leads all of baseball with 175 strikeouts in 138 1/3 innings spanning 22 starts at Double-A and Triple-A this season. The 23-year-old Straily has compiled an 8-6 record and 2.60 ERA, including a 1.36 ERA at Triple-A Sacramento.
1. Oakland DH Seth Smith suffered a strained left hamstring that forced him out of Thursday's game.
2. Blue Jays 3B Brett Lawrie has homered only once in 25 games and remains stuck on nine in 99 games - the same amount he hit in 43 games last year.
3. Athletics 3B Brandon Inge extended his hitting streak to 12 games.
Recent Trends on Toronto: :
- TOR are 12-3 in Cecils last 15 Fri. starts.
- Under is 6-2-1 in Cecils last 9 starts overall.
- TOR are 2-6 in Cecils last 8 road starts.
Recent Trends on Oakland: :
- OAK are 20-6 in their last 26 overall.
- OAK are 20-6 in their last 26 games on grass.
- Under is 13-4 in OAK last 17 home games.
Las Vegas Sports Betting MLB Prediction: Toronto +115
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