Orioles vs. Blue Jays MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Target the Total in Toronto (Thursday, June 16)

Orioles vs. Blue Jays MLB Odds, Pick & Preview: Target the Total in Toronto (Thursday, June 16) article feature image

Via Cole Burston/Getty Images. Pictured: Blue Jays pitcher Kevin Gausman.

  • The Blue Jays are hosting the Orioles in a matchup of AL East foes.
  • This game should feature some quality pitching as Tyler Wells starts for Baltimore and Kevin Gausman gets the ball for Toronto.
  • Doug Ziefel previews the matchup and shares his best bet below.

Orioles vs. Blue Jays Odds

Orioles Odds+205
Blue Jays Odds-255
Time3:07 p.m. ET
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Orioles gave the Jays all they could handle in Wednesday night's meeting as the Orioles mounted a comeback to force extras, but their offense ran dry in the 10th and Toronto escaped with a 7-6 victory.

As for Thursday's matchup, the scoreboard will be much dimmer as Kevin Gausman will get the ball for the Blue Jays. Gausman has been fantastic thus far and has not surrendered more than three runs in any outing this season. His eyes ought to be lighting up at the thought of facing this O's lineup after the rough schedule he's had this season.

Opposing Gausman will be Tyler Wells. The 27-year-old right-hander has proven to be very effective for Baltimore this season. Although, this Toronto lineup will be quite the test. Can Wells go blow for blow with Gausman? Or will the Jays open this one up behind their ace?

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Look For Gausman to Silence O's Bats

If it weren't for the sheer dominance of division rival Shane McClanahan, Kevin Gausman would be the clear favorite to win the AL Cy Young. He has been everything the Jays wanted when they signed him and he'll enter this start with a 2.67 ERA and a 1.19 WHIP.

The command of his electric stuff has taken Gausman to the next level over the past few seasons. As a result, he is in the top four percent of all qualified pitchers in walk and chase rate. That means he's getting ahead of hitters and forcing them to hit his pitch late in the count, regardless of whether it is a strike.

The Orioles' outlook for this matchup is bleak. They profile as a team will fall right into what Gausman likes to do. Baltimore has the eighth-lowest walk rate and seventh-highest strikeout rate in the majors.

Baltimore's lack of discipline will be exposed by Gausman's fastball-splitter combination. That pairing has been deadly for opposing hitters this season. Gausman's splitter has a .146 expected batting average and a 45.6 whiff rate. His command of the fastball forces teams to respect his fastball until the bottom drops out it … and they realize it was actually a splitter.

Given the Orioles' tendencies, it would be shocking to see them string together hits.

Expect Wells to Contain Red-Hot Jays

When you look at Tyler Wells you see everything scouts look for in a young pitcher. He has tremendous size and extension with his 6'8" frame. However, all that leverage does not translate into high velocity. Instead, Wells possesses excellent command and life in his arsenal.

Wells enters this outing in the top 35% of baseball in average exit velocity and hard-hit rate. He, much like his counterpart, ranks in the top 20% in both whiff and walk rate.

Wells, also like Gausman, attacks hitters with his fastball to set up his slider and change up. His fastball is a weapon of its own with elite spin rate coming from a very high arm slot.

Toronto will be no easy task, however. The Blue Jays are currently 4th in the majors in wRC+ and have the second-highest team batting average. Their lineup is star-studded, with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. leading the way. My expectations for Wells in this outing are tempered, but he is very capable of doing enough to support our angle here.

Orioles-Blue Jays Pick

The Blue Jays always seem to get a boost at the Rogers Center — which was apparent in last Wednesday's game — but having Kevin Gausman on the mound gives this matchup a different vibe. I expect him to work deep into this game as he works quickly through Baltimore's lineup.

However, Tyler Wells may have more success than the line will tell you. He's quietly been very solid this season and we've already seen him succeed against the Yankees. He may get touched up a bit, but he will ultimately limit the scoring and his effort, along with the dominance of Gausman, will have the final score under the total.

Pick: Under 8.5

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