Texas Rangers vs. Toronto Blue Jays: Odds, Prediction

Payton Matthews | Updated Apr 05, 2022

Expectations are sky-high for Toronto in 2022 as the Blue Jays prepare to kick off their season at home on Friday against the Texas Rangers.

April 08, 2022, 7:07 PM ET
Rogers Centre

The Blue Jays open a very promising 2022 Major League Baseball season Friday in front of an expected sellout crowd at Rogers Centre against the Texas Rangers, one of the AL’s worst teams last year. The Jays are solid Game 1 and series favourites on the MLB odds.

Betting Analysis

We may not know which players this will affect until the first game of each series, but no unvaccinated players will be allowed to play in Toronto for the foreseeable future. This weekend if a key Texas guy is out, that’s most likely why.

Last season, Toronto won four of the six meetings and all three at home … which in that case was Buffalo. Due to one game being postponed, the teams had to play a seven-inning doubleheader to conclude the series. No seven-inning doubleheader this year, but a runner will be placed on second base to start extra innings. That is expected to be eliminated starting in 2023 when pitch clocks will come into play as well. MLB rosters are expanded from 26 to 28 players for April only because of the late start/shortened spring training.

Former Blue Jay Marcus Semien (more on him below) hit .304 with three homers against Texas in 2021. AL MVP runner-up Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hit .316 with three homers.

The Blue Jays will visit Texas from Sept. 9-11.

Texas Rangers

The Rangers were swept in the 2016 ALDS by the Blue Jays, and Texas hasn’t sniffed the playoffs since, with five straight losing seasons. It has an over-under win total of 74.5 this year. The 2021 club was one of the most anonymous in the majors and had only 60 victories. Some thought Manager Chris Woodward would be fired, but he wasn’t. The Rangers did spend a lot of money this off-season, signing former NL Rookie of the Year and World Series MVP Corey Seager of the Dodgers to a 10-year, $325 million (US) deal and former Blue Jays second baseman Semien to a seven-year, $175 million (US) contract. Semien was third in the 2021 AL MVP voting, batting .265 with 45 homers and 102 RBIs.

While the Rangers’ offence should be better with Seager and Semien alone, there’s still not much else here. Texas is the lone AL team to never have a Cy Young winner, and that’s not changing in 2022. The new “ace” is right-hander Jon Gray, who was 8-12 with a 4.59 ERA last year with Colorado and who starts Friday. Having spent his entire career in the National League, Gray has only faced Toronto twice and is 2-0 with a 2.63 ERA.

Toronto Blue Jays

Toronto could be the most talented team in the American League, even after losing Semien and Cy Young winner Robbie Ray in free agency. The Jays are +414 favourites to win the pennant and +162 leaders to win the AL East. Guerrero is a +351 second-favourite for AL MVP behind Shohei Ohtani (+295), which was how the 2021 voting finished, and a +648 favourite to lead the majors in homers after tying for the league lead with 48 last year. Guerrero has generally been batting third in the lineup this spring behind George Springer and Bo Bichette with new third baseman Matt Chapman often in the No. 7 spot.

Jose Berrios was acquired from the Twins during last season and got a big extension in the off-season. The right-hander gets the Opening Day nod. In 12 starts with the Jays, he was 5-4 with a 3.58 ERA. Berrios made one 2021 start vs. Texas, taking a no-decision after allowing three runs over six innings. Semien is 2-for-8 career with a homer off him.

MLB Prediction: Who Will Win Rangers vs. Blue Jays?