Jul 18, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays catcher Russell Martin (55) talks with Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher R.A. Dickey (43) during the fifth inning in a game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Rogers Centre. The Tampa Bay Rays won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
Game 1: Friday, August 7th – 7:05 ET
R.A. Dickey (6-10, 4.06) vs. Nate Eovaldi (11-2, 4.30)
The veteran knuckler has been Toronto’s most consistent starting option over the past month and is on the verge of dipping his ERA back below four. His newfound success has been attributed to a little more juice behind his trademark pitch, which has also begun to find the strike zone with more regularity.
Over Dickey’s last two starts, he’s pitched 15.0 innings of shutout ball while allowing nine hits and striking out 10. He’s lasted a minimum of 6.0 innings in nine of his last ten starts, and figures to be one of Toronto’s most valuable arms down the playoff stretch.
New York will counter with the electric arm of Nate Eovaldi, who was one of my favorite pitchers in the Major Leagues before he joined the evil empire. Eovaldi has racked up the wins, but his 4.30 ERA and 1.49 WHIP show us that he’s not untouchable. The right-hander has walked three batters in two of his three most recent starts, and has lasted a full six inning just once over his last six starts. The Blue Jays wface a tall task in catching up to his fastball, but if they do, he’ll provide their bats with some free power.
Next: Game two: Price on the big stage!