The Toronto Blue Jays will look to stave off elimination as they take on the Seattle Mariners at the Rogers Centre for Game 2 of the AL Wild Card round of the MLB playoffs.
If the Jays are able to stay alive, Game 3 will be held on Sunday, Oct. 9, in Toronto.
Let’s dive into to take a deeper look at the matchup for Game 2 to determine the best bets and props between the Blue Jays and Mariners.
Mariners vs Blue Jays Game 2 Odds
The Blue Jays are heavy home favorites here, as oddsmakers project them to avoid the sweep in Game 2 with Kevin Gausman on the mound.
It’s a bit pricey at -162 odds, but it’s hard to see the Jays getting swept at home. The total sits at seven runs, which looks about right with Gausman taking on Robbie Ray.
Mariners vs Blue Jays Game 2 Prediction
Blue Jays 5, Mariners 1
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While both pitchers are coming off strong seasons, I’m giving the pitching advantage to Toronto. Gausman finished the year with a 24.4% strikeout-to-walk rate, which ranked 5th in MLB.
The Jays’ ace was better than his 3.35 ERA suggests, as his 2.76 xFIP was only topped by Shohei Ohtani and Shane McClanahan. That’s pretty impressive company for your first year in the AL East.
When Gausman has his splitter going, he’s virtually unhittable. We’ve seen dominant performances from his this year, like in a August 2nd start where he shut out the Rays for eight innings, allowing only one hit with 10 strikeouts.
On the other hand, Ray has been good, but he still is prone to the longball, posting a 1.52 HR/9, which was the second-highest total among qualified pitchers. That’s bad news against a formidable lineup that includes George Springer, Bo Bichette, and Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
To make matters worse, the Jays’ lineup is extremely righty-heavy, making it more of a challenge for the left-handed Ray. The Mariners’ starter allowed a .431 slugging percentage to righties this season, which was much higher than his .387 total against lefties.
Toronto has an advantage on the mound and with home-field here, making it likely that they avoid the sweep.
Mariners vs Blue Jays Game 2 Best Bet
Blue Jays Moneyline (-162) at FanDuel Sportsbook
WAGER: 1 Unit
I’m projecting a dominant outing from Gausman along with a much better offensive showing for the Jays here. Look for a couple of homers against their former teammate in Ray.
Look for Toronto to force a decisive Game 3 with a big win here.
Mariners vs Blue Jays Game 2 Props
Bo Bichette Over 1.5 Total Bases (+110) at FanDuel Sportsbook
WAGER: 1 Unit
Bichette was one of the hottest hitters in baseball throughout September, slashing .403/.445/.689 with 11 doubles and seven home runs. The young shortstop posted a .467 slugging percentage against lefties this year.
Bet on Bichette to step up for the Jays in a must-win game.
MLB Wild Card Props
PREVIOUS: Game 1 Pick
The Toronto Blue Jays will host the Seattle Mariners at the Rogers Centre this weekend during the AL Wild Card round of the MLB Playoffs.
All three games in the series will be in Toronto under the new playoff format, taking place Oct. 7-9.
Let’s take a look at the matchup for Game 1 in order to make a prediction and determine the best bets and props between the Blue Jays and Mariners.
Mariners vs Blue Jays Game 1 Odds
The Blue Jays are listed as a sizable favorite at home for Game 1 with Alek Manoah on the mound.
However, at -136, the juice is running a bit high, so there could be value in betting on the Mariners in such a close game.
Mariners vs Blue Jays Game 1 Prediction
Blue Jays 3, Mariners 2
We have a strong pitchers duel on our hands in Game 1 when Manoah takes the mound for the Jays while the Mariners send out groundball specialist Luis Castillo.
Manoah boasts a 0.94 ERA and 0.85 WHIP over his last seven outings in the regular season while holding the Mariners to one run over 7.1 innings during his lone outing against them back in July.
On the other side, Castillo carries a 2.99 ERA and 1.08 WHIP into Game 1, splitting his time between Cincinnati and Seattle this season. The right-hander did square off against the Jays this season back in May when the 29-year-old allowed two runs over six frames.
This game may come down to offense, and there are few teams with as many dynamic weapons as the Blue Jays. George Springer, Bo Bichette, and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. are three batters that no starting pitcher wants to see in a three-game playoff series.
However, the Mariners hold the edge in home runs during the second half (91-80) due to the efforts of Cal Raleigh, Eugenio Suárez, and AL Rookie of the Year candidate Julio Rodríguez.
It is a close matchup on paper, so I will give the edge to the home team in Game 1 with Manaoh being in pristine form at the moment.
Mariners vs Blue Jays Game 1 Best Bet
Blue Jays Moneyline (-136) at FanDuel Sportsbook
WAGER: 1 Unit
Manoah is pitching lights out at the moment, and when it comes to single game playoff picks, you should always ride with the pitching edge.
Castillo is no pushover, but the Jays have an advantage at home, making them the Game 1 favorites for a reason.
Mariners vs Blue Jays Game 1 Props
Alek Manoah Under 6.5 Strikeouts (-154) at FanDuel Sportsbook
It seems that oddsmakers are projecting Manoah to go deep in this game because this is a high bar for playoff baseball, where managers are quicker to go to their bullpens.
Manoah is one of the best young pitchers in MLB, but he’s not one with a high strikeout rate. In 196.2 innings, he’s posted a 22.9% strikeout rate.