970 Toronto at Oakland
Highly-touted youngster Marcus Stroman will take on his biggest challenge to date when he pitches against the Oakland A's. He'll be opposed by Tommy Milone, who has had plenty of success pitching at O.co
Coliseum. Stroman has been very impressive as a starter, but those starts have come against the Royals, Cardinals, Twins, Yankees twice, and White Sox. None of those offenses are the caliber of Oakland's and none of them are loaded with the kind of left-handed bats that the A's have.
Stroman has dominated righties, with an 18/1 K/BB ratio and a .250/.271/.379 slash line and a .281 wOBA. Lefties, however, have fared a lot better against Stroman with a .260/.321/.440 slash and a .336 wOBA. The A's are going to send a lefty-filled lineup at Stroman because of their belief in platoon advantages.
On the other side, Milone has a 15-8 record and a 3.04 ERA in 210 career innings. O.co
Coliseum is one of the game's tougher parks to homer in and that partially negates the Blue Jays' biggest offensive weapon. This season, Milone has a 3.12 ERA at home with a 3-0 record. He's held opposing batters to a .660 OPS in home starts and he is 6-1 with a 3.50 ERA since the start of May.
Not only do the A's have an advantage with their lefty lineup against Stroman, but outside of Jim Johnson, they're bullpen has been very good, while the Blue Jays have had a lot of difficulties, including an injury to All-Star Brett Cecil and the demotion of Steve Delabar, one of the team's better arms.
Entering Thursday's series opener, the Blue Jays had lost 15 of their last 24 since the hot stretch that got everybody's attention. Stroman has a bright future, but he's not ready for a lineup like this and it's hard to argue with what Milone has done at home in his career.
After passing on a relatively weak card yesterday, we return in full force on Friday. We are ready to ENJOY A FESTIVE CELEBRATION WITH ANOTHER GOW WINNER. Now on a current 22-14 GOW run. This game has a distinct edge over the current betting line. Join us for our American League Game of the Week.