The Tampa Bay Rays will travel to take on the Toronto Blue Jays in a Friday night MLB matchup at the Rogers Centre in Toronto. With that said, it’s a good time to check out our MLB odds series, which includes a Rays-Blue Jays prediction and pick, laid out below.
Tampa Bay has tied for the best start in modern baseball with their 13-0 start, winning all their games in a variety of ways. Manager Kevin Cash and a forward-thinking front office always has this group in contention. This may be the best Rays group in recent memory, which is scary for the American League.
Toronto has started off with an 8-5 record after finishing their 2022 in second place of the AL East, securing the top Wild Card spot with a 92-70 record. Even with a torrid end to the season, Toronto could not climb atop the division. A solid offseason supplemented an already talented roster, giving the Blue Jays a legitimate chance to contend.
Here are the Rays-Blue Jays MLB odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
MLB Odds: Rays-Blue Jays Odds
Tampa Bay Rays: -1.5 (+136)
Toronto Blue Jays: +1.5 (-164)
Over: 9 (-118)
Under: 9 (-104)
How To Watch Rays vs. Blue Jays
TV: Bally Sports Sun, Sports Net
Time: 7:07 PM ET/4:07 PM PT
*Watch MLB games LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
Why The Rays Could Cover The Spread
Randy Arozarena leads a dominant offense, hitting .263 with 41 doubles and 20 home runs last season. Arozarena has now hit 20 home runs in each of the last two seasons. Wander Franco has bounced back from two injury-riddled seasons to hit three doubles and two home runs thus far.
Yandy Diaz turned in a career year last season, hitting 33 doubles and nine home runs, with a .296/.401/.423 slash line. Diaz walked more times than he struck out in 2022 and has already hit four home runs while still maintaining these strong plate discipline habits.
Isaac Paredes, who hit 20 home runs and 16 doubles in his first season with Tampa Bay, has three home runs this season. Paredes was worth 2.5 bWAR. Luke Raley has emerged as another power threat, belting three home runs.
Brandon Lowe leads the team with five home runs, also driving in 12 runs. Wander Franco, a prized prospect that has battled injuries, has hit four home runs and seven doubles.
Drew Rasmussen has yet to allow an earned in his two starts, striking out 15 batters while allowing just three hits in 13.0 innings. Rasmussen turned in a career year in 2022, and the breakout seems to be for real.
An advantage of Tampa Bay’s front office is their ability to churn out quality bullpen talent. Pete Fairbanks has saved two games while not allowing a run in four innings.
Why The Blue Jays Could Cover The Spread
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is back to anchor a strong Toronto lineup. Last season, Guerrero, Jr. bashed 32 home runs and 35 doubles, slashing .274/.339/.480, earning his second straight All-Star bid. For the second straight season, Bo Bichette led the league in hits, slashing .290/.333/.469 with 24 home runs and 13 stolen bases.
Bichette leads the team with four home runs. George Springer headlines the outfield, hitting .267 with 25 home runs and 14 stolen bases last year. Springer has belted two home runs and swiped two bases in the early going. Keep an eye on Daulton Varsho, who was acquired from Arizona this offseason.
Varsho’s skillset is interesting, as he ranks towards the top of the Statcast leaderboards in outs above average and outfield jump.
Varsho has also caught in his career and hit 27 home runs to set a new career high last season. Varsho has three doubles and a home run this season. Matt Chapman has been uber-productive, hitting eight doubles, three home runs, and driving in 15 runs.
Jose Berrios will look to rebound in his third start, with a 11.17 ERA in 9.2 innings. On the bright side, Berrios has struck out 12 batters in his two starts, but opponents have managed a .349 batting average against the veteran. Zach Pop has allowed just one earned in 6.2 innings out of the bullpen.
Final Rays-Blue Jays Prediction & Pick
At this point, Tampa Bay may go 162-0.
Final Rays-Blue Jays Prediction & Pick: Tampa Bay -1.5 (+136), over 9 (-118)
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