Toronto Blue Jays News

Comparing the Blue Jays to the Yankees – who has the upper hand?

Evan Gignac
May 4, 2022; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette (11) cannot turn a double play after forcing out New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge in the fourth inning at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
May 4, 2022; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette (11) cannot turn a double play after forcing out New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge in the fourth inning at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports /
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Blue Jays
May 4, 2022; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Yankees starting pitcher Nestor Cortes (65) delivers a pitch against the Toronto Blue Jays in the first inning at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports /

Rotation

This is a department where both teams are stacked. These two rotations have led their teams to an elite team ERA, and both of them have been largely healthy as well. This weekend we’re set to see  Jameson Taillon, Jordan Montgomery and Gerrit Cole from the Yankees, all three of them being very effective up to this point. On the Jay’s side, they’re set to throw out Ross Stripling, Alek Manoah and Yusei Kikuchi.

This is an overall effective trio for the Blue Jays, most notably the hot hand of Ross Stripling. Between starts, spot starts, and multi to single-inning relief appearances, Stripling has been a valuable piece of the Blue Jays pitching staff. The former Dodger wields a lowly FIP of 2.97 while filling the zone to a tune of a 1.7 BB/9.

Alek Manoah has quickly become one of the faces of the franchise at only 24 years of age. Even more impressive, he’s only been in the organization since being drafted back in 2019. Manoah is simply a winner, and does so by limiting hard contact, while still filling the strike zone with multiple plus pitches.

Kikuchi has been the biggest wildcard of the season, which is mostly what Blue Jays fans expected upon signing him. It appeared that after he had reformed his pitch usage he was set on the right track. That was until his short outing against the offensively-challenged Royals, then surrendering four earned to the Orioles on Tuesday. Sunday will be a big test for the left-hander, as he seeks some sort of consistency but does have a solid track record against the Yankees this season to the tune of a 3.07 ERA through three starts.

The other two starters who won’t be appearing this weekend are a couple of valuable pitchers, to say the least. Jose Berrios and Kevin Gausman are similar pitchers to a degree, but one of them has been getting better results than the other. Gausman is pitching like an All-Star once again, even after his rough outing yesterday, while Berrios has had his inconsistencies thus far. Regardless, I believe these two to be a couple of top-tier starters at the top of the Jays’ rotation. The Blue Jays rotation is good, but I have to admit the Yankees rotation is better.

Four of their starters have an ERA under 3.00, the only one who doesn’t being Gerrit Cole. You simply can’t deny that these guys are unreal. Career seasons from Jameson Taillon and Nestor Cortes, a healthy resurgence from Luis Severino and Jordan Montgomery, and simply a slow start to the season for Cole results in the best rotation in baseball. I believed this to be the weak spot for the Yankees coming into 2022, but all five of their hurlers answered the bell, and have yet to falter.

Advantage: Yankees

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