The Price is Wrong
David Price continued his successful ways, getting the win in a 12-2 Rays win over the Blue Jays. The wicked defeat erases all good will the Jays had built up in starting the season 6-4. The offense wasn’t working, the pitching was disastrous, and they couldn’t even keep it close. Morrow gave up 6 runs, but at least he went 6 innings. After two perfect innings of relief (I love you Luis Perez, I really do), Villanueva came in and gave up 6 runs. In the ninth. The Blue Jays did manage 12 hits, but 11 were singles, and they only scored twice. As a team they saw fewer than 4 pitches per at bat, down from where they were against Cleveland in the season opening series.
Tonight, Alvarez pitches against Hellickson, in a battle of young up-and-coming finesse pitchers. Hellickson is the type of pitcher that the Jays have trouble with. He doesn’t rack up the strikeouts but doesn’t give up a lot of hard hit balls either. The key for the Jays offense is going to be getting fly balls instead of ground balls against Hellickson, as Boston did against the young right-hander in his second start of the season. For Alvarez, he’s going to have to maintain his control and not walk any of the Rays, who are good at getting long at-bats and making you work. Alvarez has actually been much better against left-handers this year than right-handers, so he might be able to get past some of the Rays lefties like Pena, Joyce, and Scott without too many problems. The bullpen will also need to be solid.
Around the league, the Rangers continued to look like one of the best teams in baseball, beating the Red Sox to improve to 10-2. With their combination of hitting (averaging around 6 runs a game) and pitching (solid starting staff & bullpen and Darvish hasn’t even really contributed yet) they look like the class of the AL. The Nationals also managed to win again, improving to 10-3, good for first in the NL East. They’ve used timely hitting and absolutely ridiculous pitching to get off to this fast start. They’ve only given up 4 or more runs 3 times in 13 games this season. Strasburg looks like one of the favorites for the Cy Young and guys like Zimmerman and Gio Gonzalez are consistently shutting teams down. Their first real test will be at the start of May, when they face the Diamondbacks and Phillies in back-to-back series.