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Series Preview: Players Weekend With The Big Sexy And The Twins

It’s Players Weekend! That means we finally get to see guys rock jerseys that say stuff like “Moaky”, “The Train”, and, of course, “Loup” on the back. If that doesn’t make up for the dread of being five games out of a playoff spot before September, I don’t know what will!

But hey, this weekend provides an opportunity for the Jays to make up some major ground on a team they need to catch. So, uh, never say never, I guess!

Friday at 7:07 ET

Big Sexy, live and in person. Bartolo Colon was let go by the Braves following 13 putrid starts in which he put together an 8.14 ERA and only won two games. Since joining the Twins, the old man has picked up his game, putting together a significantly-less-bad-but-still-not-good 4.46 ERA through his first seven starts. Colon is… What you’d expect from a 100-year-old still pitching in the big leagues. He doesn’t throw hard, doesn’t strike many out, but mixes his pitches, has decent command, and doesn’t get rattled. He’s a relic and a treat to watch, but hopefully the Jays can knock him around like they did the last time he threw at Rogers Centre back in 2015.

Saturday 1:07 ET

Continuing with their theme of having the back-end of the 2015 New York Mets starting rotation, the Twins will trot Dillon “I Just Don’t Care Anymore” Gee on Saturday. Released by the Rangers back in June, Gee joined the Twins to help fill their patchwork pitching staff and has been quite solid in Minnesota. In five appearances between the ‘pen and rotation, Gee has 1.93 ERA and is limiting opponents to 6.3 hits per nine innings. He’s made just one start, but it was a very good one. He held the Chicago White Sox to just two hits over six innings, but, as we know, the White Sox literally aren’t a Major League Baseball team, so, take it with a grain of salt.

Sunday at 1:07 ET

Going against the Mets theme in the series finale on Sunday will be Kyle Gibson, who’s having a pretty rough season. Gibson, the former first round pick of the Twins and expected future top-of-the-rotation guy in Minnesota, owns a 5.76 ERA through 22 starts this year. He’s only striking out 6.5 batters per nine, which has been the standard in recent years for Gibson, who’s generally a pitch-to-contact sinkerball type.

The Jays have yet to announce their starter for Sunday’s game, but as I pointed out earlier today, it’ll likely be Joe Biagini, who’s coming off of a very strong start for Triple-A Buffalo. I imagine Biagini will be inserted into the rotation and will finish the season there as he auditions for a role as a starter on the 2018 squad.

Thoughts…

See, this is why it’s really difficult to give up on the season. The Twins, the 2017 Minnesota Twins, who are bad — very, very bad! — are currently occupying the second wild card spot. Did I mention that they’re bad? Because they are!

It makes very little sense that this team is 65-62 right now, as their Pythagorean Record suggests they should be at 60-67. And when you look up and down their roster, even that seems generous. They have three batters with an OPS above .800, one starter with an ERA below 4.00, and a decent but not suffocating bullpen.

If the Jays can take advantage of Colon, Gee, and Gibson and sweep this inexplicably successful Twins squad, we can get hyped up again.