Yu Darvish of the Rangers is coming off of one of his best starts since the All-Star break, and he is 2-0 vs. Toronto, which now has an injury depleted lineup. With J.A. Happ coming off an improved outing, go ‘under’ Friday.
Look for a lower scoring game than the total indicates on Friday night when Yu Darvish and the Texas Rangers (68-49 overall, 33-27 away) take on J.A. Happ and the Toronto Blue Jays (55-63 overall, 30-28 home) as the teams begin a three-game weekend series north of the border from Rogers Center in Toronto, ON Canada at 7:07 ET.MLB Pick
The posted total at 5 Dimes is 9 for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at -120.
The Rangers lead the American League West by six games over the surprising second place Oakland Athletics with the team that most people see as the biggest threat to Texas by the end of the year, the Los Angeles Angels, in third place seven games out.
Texas maintained that first place lead despite losing three out of four games to the New York Yankees in the Bronx, although the Rangers did avoid the four-game sweep by winning the series finale 10-6 yesterday. They now hope to build some momentum in Canada tonight with their Japanese import Darvish on the mound.
Darvish had a great first half of the year in his first season in the Major Leagues as he earned a spot on the All-Star team by going 10-5 with a 3.59 ERA at the break with 117 strikeouts in 102.2 innings. Things have not gone so smooth for him after the break though, as he is just 2-3 with a 7.11 ERA and a bloated 1.74 WHIP.
With that said, Darvish had his best outing in a while vs. a strong Detroit Tigers lineup in his last start Sunday, recording a Quality Start as he allowed three runs on six hits with eight strikeouts in 6.2 innings. Darvish now has a chance for continued success against a Toronto team that he has done well against this year, winning both of his starts against the Blue Jays while allowing a grand total of four runs and 11 hits in 12 innings with 12 strikeouts.
Furthermore, those starts came when the Blue Jays were at full strength, and he is now facing an injury-riddled lineup full of AAA call-ups with Jose Batista, Brett Lawrie and Adam Lind among others all on the Disabled List.
Now, Happ has failed to get out of the sixth inning in either of his two starts for the Blue Jays since being acquired just before the trading deadline, but he was a tad better in his second start while getting the win over the mighty Yankees on Sunday.
Happ was charged with four runs on six hits in 5.2 innings, but he was quite solid while allowing only one run in the first five innings and his four strikeouts leave him with 112 strikeouts on the year in 121.1 innings with the Blue Jays and the Houston Astros combined.
The southpaw now gets a chance to tack on some more strikeouts vs. the mostly free swinging Texas lineup, and remember that before the 10-run outburst yesterday, the Texas lineup had been in a bit of a funk scoring two runs or less in four of its previous five games.
Look for Happ to limit the Rangers enough to keep this game ‘under’ on Friday.
: Rangers, Blue Jays ‘under’ 9 (-120)