The Cleveland Indians and Toronto Blue Jays square off in the third contest of a four-game series at Rogers Centre in Toronto on Wednesday, August 4, with the first pitch at 7:07 PM ET, so here’s the best betting pick for this American League showdown.
The Indians upset the odds in the opener this past Monday, outlasting the Blue Jays 5-2 in ten innings as +230 underdogs to tie their regular-season series with Toronto at 2-2. Cleveland is a +188 road dog for Wednesday’s clash (the second tilt of the set has been excluded from the analysis), while the Blue Jays are -205 favorites with a total of 10.0 runs on Bovada Sportsbook.
The Indians hope J.C. Mejia will finally deliver a decent performance
The Cleveland Indians defeated the Blue Jays in the opener thanks to an exceptional job from their pitching staff. Rookie Eli Morgan tossed six frames of a two-run ball and fanned nine, while four relievers shut down one of the scariest lineups in baseball.
The Tribe improved to 52-51 on the season, tallying its seventh win in 16 outings since the All-Star. Cleveland has scored 67 runs in that span while posting the eighth-worst OPS in the majors (.704) along with the sixth-worst batting average (.233). On the pitching side of things, the Indians have registered a 4.76 ERA and 1.33 WHIP through their previous 16 games.
Another rookie will get the starting call Wednesday, and J.C. Mejia has been awful through his first 13 MLB appearances (10 starts). The 24-year-old righty is 1-6 and owns a 7.60 ERA and 1.49 WHIP. He’s yielded a whopping 25 earned runs across five starts in July (21.1 innings pitched).
Mejia met the Blue Jays way back in May. He got five outs in relief while surrendering one free pass. Since then, Mejia has recorded ten starts, and the Indians have dropped eight of those ten contests.
The Blue Jays are 1-4 in Steven Matz’s last five starts
Steven Matz will toe the slab for the Blue Jays on Wednesday, and the 30-year-old southpaw hasn’t been at his best lately. Matz has allowed 13 earned runs over his previous 20.2 innings of work (five starts), mostly struggling early in the games. The lefty is 8-6 in 18 starts this season, sporting a pedestrian 4.58 ERA and 1.38 WHIP, so Toronto desperately needs more from Matz.
The Blue Jays’ pitching staff has recorded the fifth-lowest ERA in the majors since the All-Star break (3.52) and needs to continue to improve. Toronto fell to 54-49 on the season following that 5-2 defeat to Cleveland, and the Blue Jays are slowly losing the pace in the playoff race.
The Blue Jays own the third-highest scoring offense in baseball, averaging 5.15 runs per game. They are leading the majors in slugging (.457) and OPS (.784), and the Blue Jays have recorded a strong .267/.329/.501 slash line since the All-Star, smacking 30 home runs in the process.
- 2-6 in the last nine games against the AL East
- 0-5 in J.C. Mejia’s last five starts
- 4-1 in the last five games against the American League
- 8-4 in the last 12 home contests
The Cleveland Indians vs. Toronto Blue Jays Pick
Steven Matz met the Indians once in 2021 and yielded four runs (two earned) across five innings in a no-decision. I don’t expect him to win this game for the Blue Jays, but I’m expecting Toronto’s offense to step up after a lousy display in the opener.
The Blue Jays had only six hits on Monday, and that should change drastically in this one. They cannot bottle things against a struggling rookie, and J.C. Mejia has really struggled as of late.
Pick: Take Toronto Blue Jays at -205
I’m going with the over despite a 10-run line. Both starting pitchers have been terrible over the last few weeks, and even if one of them continues with his poor form, this clash will produce a bunch of runs.
Furthermore, the Indians ‘pen has registered the fourth-highest ERA in the MLB over the previous 15 days (5.20). After a strong performance in the opener, they should regress through the series. On the other side, the Blue Jays bullpen has a solid 3.30 ERA over the last 12 games overall.
Pick: Go over 10.0 runs at -105