Game Thread: Toronto Blue Jays (19-27) vs. Baltimore Orioles (25-21)


Apr 22, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado (13) steals second base safely in the eighth inning as Toronto Blue Jays second baseman Emilio Bonifacio (1) does not get the throw in time at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. The Orioles defeated the Jays 2 – 1. Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Brandon Morrow (1-3, 5.16 ERA) vs. Kevin Gausman (2-4, 3.11 ERA*)

*Denotes in AA for the Bowie Baysox.

Kevin Gausman will make his first career MLB start tonight at Rogers Centre as part of the Baltimore Orioles injury-deleted rotation. He was the Orioles’ first round pick (4th overall) out of LSU in 2012. I’m not a big prospects guy so I really don’t know much else about him other than the fact he is one of Baltimore’s best. Looking at his Double-A numbers what sticks out to me is his 9.80 K/BB ratio. The Jays may be forced to swing the bat if Gausman is able to find the strike zone early. It’s always tough to predict what will happen the first time a team sees a pitcher. Experienced teams can be fooled by a guy they have never seen before. I guess we will have to see how this one plays out.

ESPN gave us a quote from Gausman in their own preview:

"“Obviously, it’s going to be really exciting,” Gausman said. “I try and not think about it too much. Just go out there and keep doing what you’re doing and throw strikes.”"

I handled the Game Thread here at Jays Journal the last time Brandon Morrow took the hill and he didn’t look his usual self. Morrow only had four swinging strikes along with 8 fly outs and 6 grounds outs. He pitched to a ton of contact but to his credit was victimized by the short porch in right by Robinson Cano. In any other ballpark he most likely only allows three runs instead of five. Regardless, he was far from the dominant pitcher we saw in Seattle his last start before his thirteen day layoff as he struggled with tightness in his neck. Hopefully he will get back to missing bats again tonight.

News and Notes:

Blue Jays need to stay away from Chris Davis – he was 4 for 4 yesterday including his league leading 14th home run… However Davis is 0 for 11 with 7 Ks against Morrow since 2011… Jose Bautista continues to be the man, also going 4 for 4 yesterday with 2 HR… Gausman has 49 strikeouts and only 5 walks in 46 1/3 innings in AA… Blue Jays were 5-4 at home against Orioles last year (ESPN)

"Join me and the rest of the Jays Journal staff for LIVE updates every half innings. And make sure to check out Jeff Morten’s Series Preview! Let’s get our Toronto Blue Jays talk on!"

Toronto Blue Jays starting lineup:

Baltimore Orioles starting lineup (projected):

N McLouth LF
M Machado 3B
N Markakis RF
A Jones DH
C Davis 1B
M Weiters C
J Hardy SS
C Dickerson CF
A Casilla 2B

K Gausman P