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Game 22: Rays @ Jays 1:07 ET


Bautista_medium
from Brooks

It is pretty clear what James Shields has to do to be successful today against the Canuck Cyborg -- no fastballs, and nothing above mid thigh. Change-up after change-up with curves mixed in all low and away. If Joey Bats walks four times today, I'm totally fine with that. Shields has only made six starts north of the border and has but one victory and a 5.87 ERA in that time as he has forked up 16 home runs in 38.1 IP - and who can forget the six home run disaster of last season. Before that start, Shield had been rather serviceable against the Jays.
Today's lineups:

Fuld - LF
Damon - DH
Zobrist - RF
DanJo - 1B 
Upton - CF
Lopez - 3B
Rodriguez - 2B
Shoppach - C
Brignac - SS

Patterson - CF
Escobar - SS
Bautista - RF
Lind - 1B
Rivera - DH
Arencibia - C
Snider - LF
McDonald - 3B
McCoy - 2B

Note that Brignac and DanJo get the matchup vs the lefty but Matt Joyce is once again left on the pine. Why is Brignac in there today? Rancel predicted this awhile back. The Rays faced Romero three times last season and the club had nearly as many walks (11) as they did hits (12) in 18.1 innings of work while striking out 15 times. Romero is a reverse splits guy historically as he's .251/.334/.351 vs RHP while .283/.350/.474 against lefties (poor Joyce). In the early sample size, Romero has held lefties to a .250/.357/.444 line and righties to a .231/.265/.338 line. 

Regardless of the outcome, Topkin reports that Longoria is nearly ready to come off the disabled list so he should be back with the team no later than Friday. The cut watch begins....