Price's Jays debut leads Monday's slate

Price's Jays debut leads Monday's slate

This is why the Blue Jays traded for ace left-hander David Price.

Price, acquired by Toronto from Detroit for three prospects before the non-waiver Trade Deadline, makes his Blue Jays debut at 1:07 p.m. ET on Monday in Toronto in undoubtedly the most must-see game of the day.

The Twins, who travel to Toronto to begin a four-game series, hold a small edge in the race for the second American League Wild Card, with multiple teams -- including the Blue Jays -- right on their heels.

Price gets a chance to make an immediate impression on his new club, as Toronto looks to break baseball's longest postseason drought -- 21 years.

"You can feel the excitement when we were in the dugout. I felt it in the locker room," Price said when he was officially introduced. "This is a group of guys who want to win, and this is a management and front office that wants to win. So whenever you can kind of put those things together and put it in this city, this country, and it's very important, that's what matters."

Price, an AL lifer who spent the last year in the Central division, is quite familiar with Minnesota. He's 8-3 with a 2.21 ERA in 14 career games (13 starts) against the Twins, including holding them to only two unearned runs in 16 2/3 innings over two starts this season.

Here are three other games to watch for:

Battle of the Lone Star state: HOU @ TEX, 8:05 p.m. ET
The Astros and Rangers both added at the Deadline, with the Astros fortifying their roster for a run at the AL West title and the Rangers making moves to help for this season and beyond. Recently when these two teams have met, the Rangers have had the edge, but it's the Astros who sit in first place with the Rangers looking up.

Rookie right-hander Lance McCullers makes his first career start against the Rangers, coming off seven innings of one-run ball against the Angels.

Veteran righty Colby Lewis takes the ball for the Rangers, entering with a 2.89 ERA over his last four starts, all quality.

McCullers' stellar start

Cubs begin tough stretch: CHC @ PIT, 7:05 p.m. ET
The Cubs sit on the cusp of the National League Wild Card race, and with the dog days of summer now officially upon us, it's time for them to start making moves. There's no better time like the present, as Chicago's next seven games come against the two teams ahead of them in the Wild Card standings, beginning with a three-game series in Pittsburgh.

A pair of lefties duel in the opener, as Chicago's Jon Lester -- who threw seven innings of one-run ball against the Pirates earlier this year -- is fresh off a 14-strikeout performance against the Rockies.

The Bucs counter with Francisco Liriano, who is 4-2 with a 2.56 ERA in 10 career starts against Chicago.

King Felix takes on Rox at Coors: SEA @ COL, 8:40 p.m. ET
Mariners right-hander Felix Hernandez is coming off a dud of a start -- seven runs on 12 hits in 6 2/3 innings against the D-backs -- and now has to travel to the thin air of Coors Field. For Hernandez, who has a 2.75 ERA in 35 career Interleague starts, it will be his first career start at Coors.

The Rockies -- returning to Denver for the first time since trading face-of-the-franchise shortstop Troy Tulowitzki -- send right-hander Eddie Butler to the mound.

Butler's quality start

Cash Kruth is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.