Tuesday’s Boston Red Sox Toronto Blue Jays matchup postponed

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Over The Monster 20 July, 2021 - 06:49pm 3 views

Why was the Red Sox game postponed today?

Today's game has been postponed due to thunderstorms in the Buffalo area. MLB.comBOS-TOR postponed; split DH on Aug. 7

While the Red Sox red-hot offense looked to keep the balls soaring, a rainy forecast in Buffalo had other plans.

Red Sox-Blue Jays postponed in Buffalo.

The game is expected to be made up at Fenway when the Blue Jays come to town for what was initially anticipated to be a three-game series spanning from August 6-8.

Red Sox pitcher Garrett Richards is slated to take the hill in tomorrow night’s game for the series finale, pushing back each subsequent starting pitcher by at least a day. With the batting order replicating that of last night’s, fans are surely more than eager to see if this experiment will continue to be an effective practice moving forward.

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Blue Jays felt 'incredibly supported' in Buffalo, built better bond here

Buffalo News 21 July, 2021 - 01:11pm

Toronto Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo was tipped off before Monday night’s 13-4 loss to the Boston Red Sox in downtown Buffalo that the largest crowd of the season would largely cheer for the visitors.

“It wasn’t a surprise because I went out for a run,” Montoyo said, “and all I saw was red jerseys. I said, ‘OK, it’s going to be a road game.’ And it turned out to be like that. It is what it is.”

The Blue Jays got a little help from Mother Nature to ensure a repeat performance didn’t occur Tuesday night. Toronto’s second-to-last game in Buffalo, against the Red Sox, was canceled because of thunderstorms, the team announced 15 minutes before the scheduled first pitch. The game will be made up as part of a split doubleheader on Saturday, Aug. 7 at Rogers Centre in Toronto.

The Blue Jays, granted permission by the Canadian government to return to their home ballpark for the first time since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, will play their final game in Buffalo against the Red Sox on Wednesday. First pitch is scheduled for 7:07 p.m.

Those who purchased tickets for Tuesday’s game through the Blue Jays will be automatically refunded to the original payment method, the team announced. A credit should appear within 30 days. Tickets for the game will not be valid for either game of the doubleheader on Aug. 7.

“It is, first and foremost, such a good feeling to be headed back,” Blue Jays General Manager Ross Atkins said, “and it has been a massive jolt of positive energy throughout the entire organization, not just the clubhouse, on personal levels, professional levels. We could not be more excited. It increases our optimism, for sure, but at the same time we’ve shifted towards that winning cycle and have been hyperfocused on improving the organization, improving the major league team any way possible. So it doesn’t feel like that tangibly increases our desire to win, but it does feel as though it tangibly increases our optimism.”

The Blue Jays have been waiting to return to Canada for nearly two years, after playing home games the last two seasons at their spring training facility in Dunedin, Fla., and the home of their Triple-A affiliate Buffalo Bisons.

“This place has been great to us,” Montoyo said. “How the building looks like, how the fans have been. Except Monday night against the Red Sox and against the Yankees in June, we felt like we were playing on the road. It is what it is. But other than that, when we play somebody else’s teams and stuff, the crowds have been great and the support has been great. So Buffalo has been great to us.”

Red Sox manager Alex Cora said he was pleased by the environment in Buffalo.

“Obviously, it’s a smaller stadium, but we get a lot of support whenever we go,” Cora said. “It was good to see obviously for them, I know they’re looking forward to going to Toronto and getting settled, but there was a good vibe (Monday). A lot different than early in the season when we went to Dunedin. Obviously, down there, I don’t think they were letting too many fans in. I think it was up to 1,000. But Monday was a good night. It was fun. They did an amazing job here. The clubhouse, the dugout and the field is good. So we’ve got two more and hopefully they can show up and support the game and obviously support the Red Sox.”

Toronto has a 22-21 record in “home” contest this season: 12-10 in Buffalo and 10-11 in Dunedin.

The 43 home games are tied for the fewest in the majors.

“I really think the biggest difference maker of it all (returning to Toronto) is the energy that we’ll get from having local fans and having that full support from our community and that city and that country,” Atkins said. “We by no means feel that we’ve had it bad. I feel incredibly supported in Buffalo and felt great about the support that we had in Dunedin, but we haven’t had Toronto and we haven’t had Canada to locally and in the flesh support us. That is an incredible boost of energy for our players. That seems like the biggest.

“But going back to a stadium that we know and that we’ve been in, that we’ve worked to make sure that environment is one for the highest level of performance, will definitely be an added benefit. And the other obvious aspects of being in such a wonderful city.”

Atkins said the border closure had a silver lining in the relationship the Blue Jays were able to forge with Buffalo, even if local fans occasionally cheered for the opponent.

“If the border were open, we wouldn’t have been playing here,” Atkins said. “So because of that, there was opportunities for Yankees fans and Red Sox fans to buy tickets. But I’ve been really impressed by the number of Blue Jays fans, the number of just really, really sincere baseball fans that were excited to see Major League Baseball here, and there’s been incredible moments in this stadium and hopefully we’ll have a couple of more of them these days. And we understand why the Red Sox and Yankees have had some support here.

“I do think that we probably built a better bond with this city because of it and I’m really excited about what it means for this Triple A relationship, for our Triple A players that will be playing here, for the Rich family and for the leadership of the Buffalo Bisons, our long relationship with Mike Buczkowski. Really excited about what it means moving forward and do feel like we have a stronger bond with the city.”

Nate Pearson has been diagnosed with a sports hernia and is moving to the bullpen for the rest of season, Atkins said.

The hard-throwing righty has been out since June 16 and dealing with groin issues all season, but is throwing again and expected to begin bullpen work and throwing live batting practice within a week.

The team can manage the issue “conservatively in the short term,” Atkins said.

“He could be a reliever option for us in near term,” he said.

Alek Manoah, who was placed on the Injured List on Monday night with a back contusion after slipping down wet dugout stairs, is only expected to miss one start, Atkins reiterated.

The Bisons, set to return to Sahlen Field on Aug. 10, announced game times for their 23-game home slate in Buffalo.

Games on weeknights in August will begin at 7:05 p.m. The weekend games on Aug. 14, 15 and 29 begin at 1:05. The Aug. 28 game starts at 6:05.

Ten of 11 games in September begin at 6:05 p.m. The Sept. 25 game starts at 1:05.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Monday at Bisons.com.

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Buffalo’s midsummer fling with the Toronto Blue Jays is all but over.

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Red Sox vs Blue Jays MLB Odds, Picks and Predictions July 20

Covers 21 July, 2021 - 01:11pm

Boston absolutely blew up Toronto starter Ross Stripling yesterday, and now faces a guy who is making his 2021 debut and has thrown just five innings in rehab starts all season. We're betting on another big BoSox night offensively — can the Jays keep pace?

The story continues to be the same for the Toronto Blue Jays: The young squad with big bats tends to feast on bad teams but the pitching just hasn’t been there against the league’s best.

That was evident last night when they fell behind 12-0 to the American League East-leading Boston Red Sox in the opener of this three-game set. The Blue Jays hope to bounce back in Game 2 but is there value in fading the MLB betting favorite?

Check out our MLB free picks and predictions for Red Sox vs. Blue Jays on Tuesday, July 20.

Toronto hit TwinSpires' odds board as a -130 favorite and is up a few cents to -136 as of 1:30 p.m. ET today. The Blue Jays are drawing 68 percent of moneyline tickets and 58 percent of moneyline dollars. The total opened at 11 (Under -115) and is now 11 (Over -110), with 77 percent of tickets/84 percent of cash on the Over. "With a mix of public/sharp action on the Over, we’ll need the Under here," TwinSpires trading analyst Zachary Lucas.

Garrett Richards (5-5, 4.91 ERA): The “sticky stuff” crackdown has maybe had a little bit of an effect on Richards. The right-hander has seen his RPMs go down drastically and over his last seven starts,y he has pitched to a 7.11 ERA with opponents hitting .361 off him.

Thomas Hatch (0-0, 0.00 ERA): This game was supposed to be started by rookie sensation Alek Manoah but a slip in the dugout has landed him on the IL, so instead Hatch makes his 2021 debut. The right-hander had a solid 2020 pitching to a 2.73 ERA in 17 games but has missed the entire season to this point with an elbow injury.

There is some messy weather in the forecast in Buffalo. There is a 75 percent chance of rain around first pitch and a chance of thunderstorms in the area. If the game is played there could also be a 10-12 mph wind gusting in from right field.

Be sure to monitor the gametime conditions with our MLB weather info.

The Over is 7-0 in the Blue Jays' last seven games when facing a right-handed starter. Find more MLB betting trends for Red Sox vs. Blue Jays.

The Red Sox came into this matchup with the Blue Jays reeling a bit, having lost six of their previous eight games. But they were able to shake that off in the opener, jumping all over starter Ross Stripling early and never looking back in this AL East matchup.

The Red Sox looked more like the team we’ve been used to seeing all season, putting up 13 runs on 14 hits. The BoSox rank fifth in scoring, fourth in batting average, and sixth in OPS. Now, they go up against Thomas Hatch who is making his season debut.

Hatch uses a mix of a fastball, slider, and changeup and pitched fairly well against the Red Sox last season, allowing two runs on two hits in 4 2-3 innings over three relief appearances. But Boston looks like a different and more dangerous lineup this season and the Jays had to use seven relievers with Stripling only lasting a third of an inning.

While the Jays should have success against Garrett Richards (more on that in a moment), it’s hard to know what they will get out of Hatch. But he has only pitched five innings in his rehab assignment so you can expect a somewhat early call to the Jays bullpen and relying on a taxed bullpen (that is shaky to begin with) is never a good thing. 

With the lineups and starters close to a wash, the deciding factor should be the bullpens — and the Red Sox have the much better one. That edge and the value has us betting the BoSox tonight.

PREDICTION: Red Sox (+120)

The Over is just 5-5 in the 10 meetings between the Red Sox and Blue Jays this season but is 5-2 in the last seven contests — and we like the recent trend to continue. For starters, despite the O/U being an even 5-5 these teams have averaged 11 total runs scored per game in those 10 matchups. 

We’ve also already spoken about how the Red Sox lineup has a chance to be successful in this matchup, but so will the Blue Jays. Toronto ranks second in scoring and batting average and ranks first in the MLB in home runs and OPS. Oh, and they have owned Richards.

The Blue Jays have gotten to the Red Sox righty for 10 runs on 22 hits while drawing 12 walks in 16 2-3 innings of work over three starts. Combine that with Richards’ recent funk and the Jays should be able to do their part to send this one Over the number.

PREDICTION: Over 11 (-127)

Did you know that if you parlayed today’s MLB Red Sox vs. Blue Jays picks, you could win $29.32 on a $10 bet?

Use our MLB parlay calculator to create your own parlays and see their potential payouts.

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Sean Kirst: As Blue Jays near end of Buffalo stay, fans soak up big leagues at Sahlen Field

Buffalo News 21 July, 2021 - 01:11pm

An overall as the Toronto Blue Jays play the Boston Red Sox during the sixth inning.

An overall as the Toronto Blue Jays play the Boston Red Sox during the second inning at Sahlen Field.

An overall as the Toronto Blue Jays play the Boston Red Sox during the second inning.

An overall as the Toronto Blue Jays play the Boston Red Sox during the second inning at Sahlen field on Monday, July 19, 2021.

Robert Benning, a former minor league pitcher, with his son Scott at the Blue Jays-Red Sox game.

The last step, as it so often goes, was the hardest. Robert Benning was on the absolute doorstep Monday of seeing big-league baseball in Buffalo for the first time in his life when his son Scott asked the security crew for a little help.

Robert Benning has a pacemaker. Scott Benning did not want his dad going through the metal detector at Sahlen Field, and workers hustled over to help. So Robert sidestepped the barriers and made his way in. On the concourse, he stopped to absorb the larger scene: more than 12,000 people pouring toward their seats to watch the Boston Red Sox defeat the Toronto Blue Jays, 13-4.

The tickets were a Father’s Day gift from Robert Benning's granddaughter, Chelsea, who did not want her dad or grandpa to miss Buffalo's big-league moment. Benning – who raised three children with his late wife, Adarienne – vividly recalled the last time he watched major leaguers play, in person. It was 1963, when baseball held an All-Star game in Cleveland, and Benning and a close friend from Orchard Park headed west for the chance “to see Mickey Mantle and all those guys, out on the field.”

Everything went fine until their brakes gave out, just as they got home.

Benning spent a career driving a truck for Bauer’s service station, a family business. As a child during the Great Depression, his first glove was for right-handers even though he threw lefty, because in those days you made do with whatever you could get. At first, he would catch the ball, switch hands, drop the glove and throw, but eventually he managed to find a glove for his left hand at Arthur's Hardware, a place that is still rolling.

Buffalo’s midsummer fling with the Toronto Blue Jays is all but over.

From day one, he loved the game. He grew up to be a skilled enough pitcher to play as a minor leaguer in the old New York Giants system, before he pitched for a Marine Corps team, based at Quantico. If you Google him, his name pops up as a 6-foot-tall, 173-pound left-handed pitcher in 1951 for Muskogee, though he also pitched in Erie and St. Cloud.

“I worked out once with the Giants on the field in Offermann Stadium,” Benning said, speaking in a faraway voice of an exhibition game played by a legendary New York team at a Buffalo ballpark, both long gone. Yet the nice part about Monday was that nothing at Sahlen Field involved a sigh about the past: At 90, one thing Benning had never seen in his long life was a big-league game in downtown Buffalo. He was rooting for the Jays, because this was Buffalo, and they were the home team. 

“This,” he said, “is the ideal opportunity.”

Baseball fans watch the Toronto Blue Jays and Boston Red Sox during the second inning.

That sense of appreciation emanated from the crowd, much of it clad in the bright red that is the calling card of Boston's team.

Pam Leonberger, a retired postal worker who met her husband, Gary, 51 years ago in Lovejoy, wore one of her husband's Red Sox jackets as she threaded through the concourse with 8-year-old granddaughter Veronica, who had one thing on her mind: popcorn.

Leonberger said she and Gary are longtime Bisons loyalists, but their daughter Michelle – waiting in the stands with 10-year-old grandson Everett – bought them their seats for Father's Day.

“This is our first major league game, and my husband I have always been Boston fans,” she said. “This is just such a big deal, and we waited a really long time for this.”

She paused, drinking in this once-in-a-lifetime atmosphere. The only thing better, she said, would be if Major League Baseball in Buffalo could somehow, someday become permanent.

The Leonbergers made it to a game just in time. The road-weary Blue Jays will finally return to Toronto this week after a pandemic odyssey that began in spring of last year. The team spent almost two full months in Buffalo this summer, playing before fans after clinching a playoff berth in front of an empty ballpark a year ago. The Blue Jays undoubtedly forged new Western New York loyalties in a community grateful for its first big-league baseball since 1915. But Toronto – for its final homestand at Sahlen Field – ran into the fierce and sprawling allegiance of the Red Sox nation.

George McGrath of Lewiston, for instance, was there with his son Tim and grandson Ryan, both passionate Boston fans, as well Tim’s brother-in-law, John Stodolka, and his son Eoin, just turning 10.

Baseball fans watch the Toronto Blue Jays and Boston Red Sox during the third inning.

McGrath, a Brooklyn Dodgers fan as a child, never really embraced another team once the Dodgers left in the late 1950s for California. But Tim – in the mysterious way that such things happen for a child – became a fierce Red Sox loyalist. In some of the greatest memories of George McGrath's life, he used to take his kids on the relatively short drive from Lewiston to see the Jays play the Red Sox in Toronto's old Exhibition Stadium. Now he roots for Boston simply because he knows how much it means for his son, and the whole crew wore Red Sox gear, even young Eoin.

“If I didn’t,” the child said, “I think they’d disown me.”

Mark Kronenberg of Hamlin, another Red Sox guy, had a lifetime moment of his own. Sox centerfielder Jarren Duran, running back to the dugout after snagging a flyout by Vlad Guerrero Jr., tossed the ball into the stands as a sea of people surged to their feet. They stretched and grasped, causing the ball to bounce around in the air, going person to person in a crazy chain of ricochets until it popped into the grasp of a startled and utterly thrilled Kronenberg.

Mark Kronenberg snagged a baseball at Monday's Toronto-Boston game (top) that is now in the possession of Theo, his 3-year-old grandson. 

“Fantastic,” he said. He held up this big-league talisman that he hardly expected in Buffalo. It is already in the possession of Kronenberg's 3-year-old grandson Theo, who was also in the ballpark – and who, as his grandfather pointed out, "was born in Boston."

While the Red Sox faithful made a lot of noise in a game their team won easily, there were still many Blue Jays fans in the place, offering their gratitude toward the club that finally brought big-league ball to Buffalo.

Daquan Barnes and Tania Cunningham waited patiently in line so that Barnes could buy and immediately wear a Guerrero Jr. jersey, honoring Toronto's brilliant young star, a jersey that to Barnes is the ultimate symbol of this summer at Sahlen Field.

“I’ve liked the Blue Jays since I was 10 or 11, since I was just getting into baseball,” said Barnes, an aspiring photographer. “Just seemed to me that these boys have grit.”

It was the first major league game the couple had seen, an experience they described as an astounding gift. Cunningham, thinking of all those months of solitude after Covid-19 arrived, gestured at thousands of jubilant people bumping shoulders, in blue or red. Even if they cheered for different teams, she knew they shared the wonder of seeing something that might never happen in Buffalo again. 

“Just everybody being here,” Cunningham said. “That’s it for me.”  

Sean Kirst is a columnist with The Buffalo News. Email him at skirst@buffnews.com.

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An overall as the Toronto Blue Jays play the Boston Red Sox during the sixth inning.

An overall as the Toronto Blue Jays play the Boston Red Sox during the second inning at Sahlen Field.

Baseball fans watch the Toronto Blue Jays and Boston Red Sox during the second inning.

An overall as the Toronto Blue Jays play the Boston Red Sox during the second inning.

Baseball fans watch the Toronto Blue Jays and Boston Red Sox during the third inning.

An overall as the Toronto Blue Jays play the Boston Red Sox during the second inning at Sahlen field on Monday, July 19, 2021.

Robert Benning, a former minor league pitcher, with his son Scott at the Blue Jays-Red Sox game.

Mark Kronenberg snagged a baseball at Monday's Toronto-Boston game (top) that is now in the possession of Theo, his 3-year-old grandson. 

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Boston Red Sox at Toronto Blue Jays odds, picks and prediction

USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire 20 July, 2021 - 09:35am

The Toronto Blue Jays (48-43) host the Boston Red Sox (57-38) Tuesday at their temporary home of Sahlen Field in Buffalo, N.Y., for the second game of their three-game series. First pitch is scheduled for 7:07 p.m. ET. Let’s analyze BetMGM Sportsbook‘s lines around the Red Sox vs. Blue Jays odds with MLB picks and predictions.

Season series: Red Sox lead 6-4.

RHP Garrett Richards makes his 19th start for the Red Sox. He is 5-5 with a 4.91 ERA (91 2/3 IP, 50 ER), 1.68 WHIP, 4.2 BB/9 and 7.2 K/9 this year.

RHP Thomas Hatch makes his first start of the season for the Blue Jays. He was 3-1 with a 2.73 ERA (26 1/3 IP, 8 ER), 1.18 WHIP, 4.4 BB/9 and 7.9 K/9 across one start and 16 relief appearances last season.

MLB odds courtesy of BetMGM; access USA TODAY Sports for a full list. Odds last updated at 2:30 p.m. ET.

Blue Jays 9, Red Sox 6

“LEAN” to the BLUE JAYS (-135) for a half unit because the presumed “sharp” money is on Toronto while the “public” is backing Boston and Richards hasn’t looked good in his three previous starts against the Blue Jays.

More than 80% of the cash wagered is on Toronto’s money line whereas nearly 90% of the bets placed are on the Red Sox, according to Pregame.com. Typically, it’s more profitable to follow the money in sports betting, especially when it’s flowing in the opposite direction as the public.

Furthermore, in Richards’ three starts against the Blue Jays this season, his exit velocity has clocked in at 95.6, 95.7 and 94.1 mph. To put that into perspective, his average exit velocity on the season is 91.7 mph and the MLB average is 88.4 mph.

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PASS because I only “lean” to Toronto outright and don’t want to risk it with the Blue Jays -1.5 (+135).

Also, Boston has the fourth-highest cover rate as a road underdog at 21-6 ATS and Toronto is just 15-16 ATS as a home favorite.

“LEAN” to the OVER 11.5 (-105) for a half unit only because we are getting the worst of the number since the market has steamed the total up from the 10.5-run opener.

However, Boston is 10-6 O/U when Richards takes the mound, Toronto’s temporary home of Sahlen Field ranks fourth by runs scored based on park factors and the Over cashed in five of the past seven Red Sox-Blue Jays meetings.

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