According to Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com, Orioles manager Buck Showalter said today that he plans to use four starting pitchers during the upcoming ALDS.
Showalter hasn’t officially announced the specifics or the order of his rotation yet, but Kubatko believes that it will Chris Tillman, Wei-Yin Chen, Miguel Gonzalez, and Bud Norris. This means that Kevin Gausman will pitch in a relief role. $50 million man Ubaldo Jimenez will make one final start tomorrow against the Yankees to state his case for the postseason roster.
While Jimenez has been a dud this season, Orioles starters rank 12th in the majors with a 3.62 ERA. Tillman has been the de facto “ace” of the staff with a 3.26 ERA over 33 starts. He’d be lined up for a potential Game 5.
Blue Jays starter Matt Shoemaker has been diagnosed with a left knee sprain following his early departure from Saturday’s game. He’s scheduled to undergo an MRI on Sunday, after which the club will be able to determine the extent of his injury and draw up a more definite timeline for his return to the mound.
The right-hander held the A’s scoreless through three innings of three-hit, one-strikeout ball on Saturday. In the bottom of the third, with two outs and Matt Chapman on first, Shoemaker helped complete an inning-ending putout after Chapman tried to steal second. He tagged Chapman between first and second base, but appeared to twist his leg in the process and immediately started limping away.
Shoemaker was helped off the field after the play and was swiftly replaced by righty Sam Gaviglio in the bottom of the fourth. This is the first serious injury the 32-year-old has sustained since he underwent forearm surgery and missed nearly all of his 2018 campaign with the Angels. While he’s not expected to be sidelined for quite as long this time around, it’s still a concerning setback for the Blue Jays’ no. 2 starter, who currently boasts a sterling 1.57 ERA, 2.8 BB/9, and 7.5 SO/9 through his first 28 2/3 innings of 2019.
The Blue Jays will undoubtedly feel the lack of Shoemaker’s presence over the next few days, but they managed deliver a blowout win on Saturday even without his help. Behind six innings of one-run ball from Gaviglio and Elvis Luciano, the offense mustered up 10 runs — the most they’ve collected in a single game all season — and kept the A’s hardest hits at bay with impressive catches from Billy McKinney and Freddy Galvis.