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Blue Jays vs. Angels Odds, Picks, Predictions: Ohtani will Silence Toronto Bats (Thursday, May 26)

Blue Jays vs. Angels Odds, Picks, Predictions: Ohtani will Silence Toronto Bats (Thursday, May 26) article feature image
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Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images. Pictured: Shohei Ohtani.

  • The Blue Jays travel to California to take on the Angels for a weekend series.
  • Shohei Ohtani takes the ball for the Angels and will be facing a struggling Toronto offense.
  • Mike Ianniello shares his best bet below.

Blue Jays vs. Angels Odds

Blue Jays Odds +135
Angels Odds -165
Over/Under 7.5 (-110/-110)
Time 9:38 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Los Angeles is on pace to increase its win total by more than 22 wins this season. The Halos are neck and neck with Houston in the race for the AL West division title.

Toronto sits in third in the AL East and has been a little underwhelming to start the year. At just 23-30, the Blue Jays are 9-12 in May and slipping behind the Yankees and Rays once again.

Toronto will head to Los Angeles for a four-game series with the Angels this weekend and they’ll need to start playing up to expectations if they want to stay in the competitive AL East race.

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Toronto Blue Jays: Can Bats Find Their Groove?

After just two starts, Hyun-jin Ryu (LHP) was put on the Injured List with forearm inflammation. Whatever he did to get healed looks like it surely has worked. In his first two outings, Ryu allowed 11 runs over 7 1/3 innings for a 13.50 ERA.

In the two games since his return from the IL, he has surrendered just one run over 10 2/3 innings, an 0.84 ERA. Despite the improved numbers, Ryu allowed 18 hard hit balls in his past two starts, compared to 12 prior to his IL stint. He also had an xFIP over 3.86 over the past two starts.

Expected to be one of the league’s most high-powered offenses, Toronto ranks just 25th in runs scored this year. The Jays are 20th in wOBA and 18th in wRC+. During the month of May, the Blue Jays rank in the bottom three of the league in both.

For such a deep lineup, George Springer and Vlad Guerrero Jr. are the only two players on the Jays with a wRC+ above 120. They are also the only two players with more than six home runs.

Los Angeles Angels: Trout, Ohtani … and Ward?

The reigning AL MVP has gotten off to a slow start at the plate, but Shohei Ohtani (RHP) has been stellar on the mound. In seven starts, he has a 2.82 ERA and a 2.46 xFIP. His BB/9 of 2.11 is down from 3.04 a year ago and his K/9 rate is up from 10.77 to 12.44.

Ohtani’s velocity has continued to tick up each year. After averaging 93.8 miles per hour with his fastball in 2020, he ticked up to 95.6 in 2021 and has been sitting at 97.2 mph this year — the fourth highest average fastball velocity among all starting pitchers. He couples that with a slider that has been nearly unhittable and generates a 48.9% whiff rate.

I hope the fountains at Angel Stadium don’t have fish in them because there sure has been a lot of action out there this year. Los Angeles has crushed the second most home runs and sits fourth in runs scored.  The Halos lead the entire league in wRC+.

Mike Trout and Ohtani have combined for four AL MVP awards., yet it is Taylor Ward who leads the team with a 244 wRC+ and .506 wOBA. In fact, Ward leads the entire league in both categories for all players with at least 100 plate appearances. Trout ranks second.

Blue Jays-Angels Pick

As strong as Ryu looked in his past two outings, he was still hit hard and struggled to miss bats. Ryu ranks in the bottom 10% of the league in xBA, Hard-Hit%, average exit velocity and K% this year. The 35-year-old has been on a steady decline over the past four years.

Despite the names in the lineup, Toronto has really struggled at the plate this month. The Angels on the other hand, lead the league in wRC+ and have six players with a wRC+ over 120.

I’m not somebody who backs Ohtani often given the steep price typically associated with him. However, with the big names in the Blue Jays lineup we actually have a reasonable number at -150. While I do like the moneyline up to that point, I’ll instead back the sizeable starting pitching advantage and play the Angels to lead after five innings down to -110.

Pick: Los Angeles Angels F5 -0.5 (-105)

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