Saturday, September 19, 2020

Game #52 Toronto Blue Jays (26-26) @ Philadelphia Philies (27-25) - game recap

 

Hyun-Jin Ryu threw six strong innings in a losing effort as the Phillies knocked off the Blue Jays 3-1

After a rough day yesterday, where the Blue Jays dropped both games of the double header by a combined score of 15-7, the Blue Jays were back at it today trying to snap a season-high 5 game losing streak. Santiago Espinal was optioned back to the taxi squad in favor of Patrick Murphy as the Blue Jays opted for an extra arm in the bullpen tonight. Ace Hyun-jin Ryu was on the mound and looking to give his team a fighting chance. Vlad got the full day off (not surprising after a scary hit by pitch off his batting helmet in the second game. Travis Shaw was at 1B and Teoscar Hernandez got the half day off as the DH.  Could the Blue Jays snap the five game losing streak? Here is tonight's game recap.

Game Highlights:

  • The Blue Jays opened the scoring in the top of the 5th as Travis Shaw crushed a solo bomb to right-center 
  • The Phillies tied it up in the bottom half of the inning as Andrew Knapp singled home Jay Bruce
  • Two batters later, Andrew McCutchen singled home Knapp
  • Vince Velasquez pitching line: 6IP 2H 1R (earned) 3BB 6K 104 pitches (64 for strikes)
  • Hyun-Jin Ryu pitching line: 6IP 6H 2R (both earned) 1BB 8K 99 pitches (62 for strikes)
  • The Phillies added a run in the bottom of the 8th as Adam Haseley singled scoring Phil Gosselin
  • Tommy Hunter pitched a perfect 9th for his 1st save of the season.
  • Final score: Phillies 3 Blue Jays 1

My Take:

  • After surrendering 15 runs yesterday, Hyun-Jin Ryu and three relievers held the Philies to three runs, which on most days should give you a win. Not tonight. Ryu was pretty sharp through the first 4 innings, retiring 12 of the 14 batters, allowing an infield single, a walk and another single. The Phillies got to him in the 5th with 2 runs on 5 hits.. The Phillies added an insurance run in the 8th and it might as well have been 100-1 - the Blue Jays weren't coming back in this one
  • Aside from Travis Shaw's solo shot in the 5th, the Blue Jays only managed 4 other base runners, 3 on walks. The biggest threat the Blue Jays had to score was the 1st inning, when they had runners on 1st and 2nd with 1 out, only to have Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and Randal Grichuk go down swinging
  • This might have been the worst game offensively. After the Shaw HR, 14 straight Blue Jays were out. You can see the Blue Jays have no confidence at the plate right now. Bo Bichette and Teoscar Hernandez are still trying to get their timing back after lengthy absences on the IL, but the rest of the team has no excuse
  • Up next, the Blue Jays try to salvage a game in this series before they go home for the final week of the season where they will face the Yankees and Orioles in critical series. Taijuan Walker gets the start for the Blue Jays against an unknown Phillies pitcher.

Games #50 and 51 Toronto Blue Jays (26-25) @ Philadelphia Phillies (26-25) - game recap (records reflect what they were after the second game today)

 

Teoscar Hernadez was 3-4 with 2 runs scored and an RBI in the second game of the double header in a losing effort as the Phillies took both games of the double header by scores of 7-0 and 8-7

After a thorough beatdown for three straight days at Yankee Stadium, the Blue Jays moved onto Philadelphia where they will wrap up the road portion of the schedule. Today, barring any inclement weather, was to be the final double header of the season. Toronto was the 'home" team for the 1st game. Lefty Robbie Ray got the start in the 1st game and Ross Stripling was the 1st pitcher up for the 2nd game. Alejandro Kirk was behind the plate for the 1st game and Danny Jansen got the 2nd game. Vlad was in the field for both games (shock). Cavan Biggio was DH'ing the 1st game (Bo Bichette DH'd the 2nd game after being in the field game 1. Santiago Espinal got the start at SS in game 2) and at the hot corner (Travis Shaw was there in game 1) in game 2. Jonathan Villar was at 2B game 1 and Joe Panik got the start there in game 2. Randal Grichuk, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and Teoscar Hernandez were the outfielders both games at their usual positions. Could the Blue Jays sweep (or at least split the double header)? Here is/are today's game recap(s)

Game Highlights (1st game):

  • The Phillies opened the scoring in the top of the 1st as Didi Gregorius doubled home Bryce Harper 
  • The Phillies added a pair of runs in the top of the 5th as Harper hammered a 2-run bomb to right; also scoring Andrew McCutchen
  • Three batters later, Phil Gosselin singled home Alec Bohm
  • Two batters later, Andrew Knapp tripled scoring Gregorius and Gosselin
  • Robbie Ray pitching line: 4.1IP 5H 5R (all earned) 4BB 6K 92 pitches (56 for strikes)
  • The Phillies added a run in the top of the 6th as Bohm singled home Roman Quinn
  • Zach Eflin pitching line: 7IP 4H 0R 2BB 9K 92 pitches (59 for strikes)
  • Final score: Phillies 7 Blue Jays 0

My Take (1st game):

  • Both starters threw 92 pitches, one being much more efficient than the other.  Take the 1st inning for example. Robbie Ray needed 30 pitches to get through the 1st and allowed a run on a double after a pair of walks. Eflin struck out the side after allowing a leadoff single to Cavan Biggio and threw half the number of pitches as Ray did. Ray retired 11 of the next 13 batters he faced after the RBI double. However, after striking out Roman Quinn, he walker McCutchen, Harper took him yard and the next 2 batters, who both eventually came around to score, hit singles off him. It's too bad about the start by Ray, because he showed a lot of promise last time out
  • Offensively, the Blue Jays (except Cavan Biggio, who reached base all three times with a pair of hits and a walk) were stymied by Phillies righty Zach Eflin. The best chance the Blue Jays had to score was in the 7th when they had runners on 2nd and 3rd with two outs, only to see Travis Shaw strike out to end the game
  • Is Alejandro Kirk the right backup catcher? Or should the Blue Jays give Reese McGuire another chance or go with the more experienced backstop Caleb Joseph?
  • Up next, game two of the double header. Ross Stripling starts for the Blue Jays and the Phillies will counter with righty David Hale

Game Highlights (2nd game):

  • The Phillies opened the scoring in the bottom of the 1st as Didi Gregorius singled home Alec Bohm
  • The Phillies added a run in the bottom of the 3rd as Andrew McCutchen smacked a solo blast to right
  • The Blue Jays got one back n the top of the 4th as Teoscar Hernandez hammered a solo bomb down the line in left
  • Two batters later, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. singled home Randsl Grichuk
  • Two batters later, Santiago Espinal singled scoring Guerrero Jr.
  • Two batters later, Cavan Biggio singled home Espinal and Joe Panik
  • David Hale pitching line: 3.1IP 4H 2R (both earned) 0BB 1K 34 pitches (27 for strikes)
  • The Phillies tied the game in the bottom half of the inning as Rafael Marchan annihilated a 3-run bomb to right-center; also scoring Scott Kingery and Mickey Moniak
  • Ross Stripling pitching line: 3.1IP 4H 3R (all earned) 3BB 4K 65 pitches (36 for strikes)
  • The Blue Jays retook the lead in the top of the 5th on a sac fly by Randal Grichuk that scored Lourdes Gurriel Jr.
  • Scary moment a batter later as Vlad was hit by a 94MPH fastball that deflected off the side of his batting helmet. Luckily he was ok to finish the game. We'll see how he feels tomorrow because concussion symptoms can take time to appear
  • Three batters later, Hernandez scored on a bases loaded walk by Danny Jansen
  • The Phillies tied the game in the bottom of the 6th as Bryce Harper doubled home Moniak and Marchan
  • A batter later, Alec Bohm beat out an infield single. Harper scored after a terrible throw by Panik deflected off the glove of Rafael Dolis, who was forced to leave the game with knee discomfort on the play
  • Hector Neris pitched the 7th for his 5th save of the season
  • Final score: Phillies 8 Blue Jays 7

My Take (2nd game):

  • Welp, 2 games where bad pitching sunk the Blue Jays. Ross Stripling and Robbie Ray needed a combined 58 pitches to get through the 1st inning of their starts. Ray then had a rough inning in the 5th with 5 consecutive batters reaching base (Bryce Harper launched one out of the park and the 5th hit was given up by Thomas Hatch). In the second game, The bullpen was unable to hold two separate leads (Vlad didn't help on what would be the winning run, but more on that on the next point). The bullpen bending and breaking as of late is a direct result of a complete mismanagement by Charlie Montoyo, who has asked them to get at least 9, and often more outs night after night. Sure, he tried to spread out the workload as best he could, but he should have let the starters keep rolling in a few of the games, when their pitch count was still decent
  • OK, onto Vlad, who directly cost the Blue Jays the game in game 2. It was on a routine grounder that Joe Panik fielded cleanly, but for whatever reason, Vlad was running to seemingly cover second base (why he did that when Bryce Harper was either going to stay where he was or advance to 3rd on the play I have no idea), forcing Rafael Dolis to hustle over to cover 1B, forcing Panik to panic and rush the throw a bit. The ball deflected off Dolis's glove, allowing Harper to score from 2nd base. Even worse, Dolis slipped on the bag and injured his knee. If he's forced to the 10-day IL, it'll mean two closers (Ken Giles and Dolis) unavailable for the last week of the season. I'm wondering if the hit to the head Vlad took in the 5th affected his judgment.
  • Cavan Biggio, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., and Randal Grichuk were the only Blue Jays with hits in both games
  • The losses mean the Blue Jays were unable to take advantage of the Orioles, Tigers and Mariners all losing today. The last series of the season against the Orioles next weekend could be huge
  • Up next, the Blue Jays try to snap the 5 game losing streak. They'll have ace Hyun-jin Ryu on the mound. The Phillies will counter with righty Vince Velasquez

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Game #49 Toronto Blue Jays (26-23) @ New York Yankees (29-21) - game recap

 

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. was 4-4 with 3 runs scored and 2 RBI in a losing effort as the Blue Jays fell to the Yankees 10-7

Afer two blowout losses to the Yankees, the Blue Jays were looking to salvage a game of this series. It was a bullpen day for the Blue Jays who sent righty Julian Merryweather out first. Jacob Waguespack was placed on the 10-day IL with a left back sprain and Hector Perez was optioned back to the taxi squad. Wilmer Font was activated from the IL and TJ Zeuch was recalled from the taxi squad. Teoscar Hernandez made his return to the lineup and was in RF. Vlad got the half day off, serving as the DH with Travis Shaw at 1B. The rest of the lineup was the same as yesterday. Could the Blue Jays salvage a game? Here is tonight's game recap.

Game Highlights:

  • The Yankees opened the scoring in the bottom of the 1st as Giancarlo Stanton singled home DJ LeMahieu
  • A batter later, Luke Volt scored on a fielder's choice hit by Gleyber Torres 
  • Julian Merryweather pitching line: 1IP 2H 2R (both earned) 2BB 0K 21 pitches (10 for strikes)
  • The Blue Jays got one back in the top pf the 3rd as Lourdes Gurriel Jr. cracked a solo blast to dead center 
  • Four batters later, Bo Bichette singled home Danny Jansen
  • The Yankees added a run in the bottom of the 4th as Gary Sanchez doubled scoring Clint Frazier
  • A batter later, Brett Gardner smashed a 2-run bomb to dead center; also scoring Sanchez
  • A batter later, LeMahieu cranked a solo drive to right
  • A batter later, Volt lined a screamer to right-center 
  • Two batters later, Stanton cracked a solo blast to right-center 
  • A batter later, Torres cracked a solo blast to left-center
  • Both the Yankees and Blue Jays set franchise records for the most home runs hit/most home runs given up in a single inning
  • The Blue Jays got one back in the top of the 5th as Gurriel Jr. lined a solo blast to right-center
  • The Yankees added a run in the bottom of the 7th as Sanchez smacked a solo shot to left
  • Masahiro Tanaka pitching line: 7IP 7H 3R (all earned) 0BB 5K 91 pitches (62 for strikes)
  • The Blue Jays got one back in the top of the  9th as Jansen singled scoring Travis Shaw
  • A batter later, Gurriel Jr. scored on a bases loaded walk by Cavan Biggio
  • A batter later, Bo Bichette singled home Joe Panik and Jansen
  • Aroldis Chapman got the final 2 outs for his 3rd save of the season
  • Final score: Yankees 10 Blue Jays 7
\My Take:

  • Today, it was two ugly innings for the Blue Jays pitchers. Julian Merryweather started off the game giving up a pair of runs on 2 hits while walking 2. Chase Anderson had a real ugly inning in the 4th, giving up 7 runs on 7 hits (including 5HR and a walk). That was pretty much the difference in this one. The Blue Jays made a valiant effort with a 9th inning rally, but it was too little too late
  • Ten days ago, the Blue Jays scored 10 runs off Chad Green and Adam Ottavino. Tonight, Ottavino held the Blue Jays to a single, that took an overturned challenge. The Blue Jays did get to Josh Holder in the 9th with 4 runs on 3 hits and a pair of walks before Aroldis Chapman came in an literally blew the door shut with 2 swinging strikeouts on returning player Teoscar Hernandez and Randal Grichuk.
  • Hernandez was 0-5 with 4 strikeouts
  • Lourdes Gurriel Jr. was absolutely on fire, going 4 for 4 with 3 runs scored and 2 RBI
  • Up next, the Blue Jays head to Philadelphia, where they will begin the weekend series with a double header. Game 1 will see Robbie Ray starting and in game 2, Ross Stripling will get the ball to start. The Phillies have yet to name their starters for the double header tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Game #48 Toronto Blue Jays (26-22) @ New York Yankees (28-21) - game recap

Joe Panik hit a late-inning solo HR in the second consecutive blowout loss to the Yankees. Toronto fell 13-2 to the Bronx Bombers tonight


After a 20-6 blowout loss last night, the Blue Jays were looking to right the ship, taking on one of the best pitchers in the MLB, Gerritt Cole. Lots of moves ahead of this one (some necessitated by injury, some based on performance). First the bad news, Ken Giles is heading back to the IL with an elbow injury and is likely done for the season. Derek Fisher is also heading to the IL with a knee contusion after getting hit by a pitch during batting practice. Teoscar Hernandez was activated from the IL and available off the bench. Nate Pearson and Matt Shoemaker both threw to live hitters today and one or both could return soon. Hector Perez and Jacob Waguespack were also activated. Anthony Kay was optioned to the taxi squad after a rough outing last night. Tanner Roark, who made some not so nice comments after getting pulled in the 4th inning after throwing 68 pitches last start, was on the mound again. Vlad was back in the field after DH'ing last night (Joe Panik was DH tonight). Danny Jansen was back behind the plate after sitting out last night. Cavan Biggio was in RF tonight with Jonathan Villar at 2B. Could the Blue Jays rebound from last night's blow-out loss? Here is tonight's game recap.

Game Highlights:

  • The Yankees took the lead in the bottom of the 1st on a lead-off solo blast to right by DJ LeMahieu
  • The Yankees added a pair of runs in the bottom of the 3rd as Kyle Higashioka hammered a 2-run bomb to dead center; also scoring Tyler Wade
  • The Yankees added a run in the bottom of the 4th as Clint Frazier whacked a solo blast to left-center 
  • Four batters later, LeMahieu smashed a 2-run bomb to right; also scoring Gary Sanchez
  • Tanner Roark pitching line: 4IP 6H 6R (all earned) 2BB 4K 91 pitches (52 for strikes)
  • The Yankees added a run in the bottom of the 5th as Frazier singled home Aaron Hicks 
  • The Blue Jays  got one back in the top of the 6th on a wild pitch by Gerritt Cole that scored Jonathan Villar
  • The Yankees added a run in the bottom half of the inning as Higashioka smashed a solo blast to left
  • Four batters later, Luke Volt smashed a three-run blast to left; also scoring Le Mahieu and Hicks 
  • The Yankees added 2 runs in the bottom of the 7th as Higashioka smacked a 2-run blast to right-center; also scoring Wade
  • Gerritt Cole pitching line: 7IP 3H 1R (earned) 2BB 8K 95 pitches (64 for strikes)
  • The Blue Jays got one back in the top of the 9th as Joe Panik whacked a solo shot to right
  • Final score: Yankees 13 Blue Jays 2

My Take:

  • Welp, Tanner Roark can't say he was pulled too early in this one. The long ball hurt him big time today. Roark allowed 4 HR, bringing in 6 runs. The Blue Jays let him throw 91 pitches today. He certainly hasn't lived up to expectations this season.
  • The Blue Jays were 0-8 with runners in scoring position and stranded 6 (which would have still left them behind by 5 runs
  • Bullpen was about as bad as last night, giving up 7 runs on 8 hits, while walking 4 and striking out 4. Anthony Bass was the only reliever to have a good outing (mind you he threw only one pitch)
  • Up next, the Blue Jays try to salvage a game in this series before moving onto Philadelphia. Chase Anderson gets the start against Jays killer Masahiro Tanaka

Game #47 Toronto Blue Jays (26-21) @ New York Yankees (27-21) - game recap

 

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. was 3-4 with 2 runs scored and a pair of RBI in a 20-6 loss to the Yankees
Lourdes Gurriel Jr. was 3-4 with 2 runs scored and 2RBI in a 20-6 loss to the Yankees

The Blue Jays opened up the final road trip of the season at Yankee stadium. Taijuan Walker got the start. Alejandro Kirk got his second career start behind the plate. Vlad got the half day off, serving as the DH, with Travis Shaw at 1B. Cavan Biggio was at the hot corner for the second straight game with Joe Panik playing 2B. Derek Fisher got the start in RF. Could the Blue Jays start the week with a win? Here is tonight's game recap.

Game Highlights:

  • The Blue Jays opened the scoring in the top of the 2nd as Vladimir Guerrero Jr. lined a solo blast to right-center
  • The Yankees tied the game in the bottom half of the 2nd inning as Brett Gardner singled home Gio Urshela 
  • Two batters later, Tyler Wade singled scoring Clint Frazier 
  • A batter later, DJ LeMahieu singled home Gardner 
  • A batter later, Luke Volt smashed a 3-run bomb to left ; also scoring Wade and LeMahieu 
  • A batter later, Aaron Hicks whacked a solo blast to right
  • Taijuan Walker pitching line: 1.2IP 6H 7R (1 earned) 0BB 2K 43 pitches (28 for strikes)
  • The Yankees added a run in the bottom of the 3rd as Gary Sanchez was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, forcing in Urshela
  • A batter later, Wade was plunked by a pitch, forcing in Frazier 
  • A batter later, LeMahieu cleared the bases with a double scoring Wade, Sanchez and Gardner 
  • The Blue Jays got a pair back in the top of the 4th as Lourdes Gurriel Jr. hit a 2-run blast to left; also scoring Guerrero Jr.
  • The Yankees added three more runs in the bottom half of the inning on a 3-run bomb to left by Sanchez; also scoring Urshela and Frazier 
  • Three batters later, Volt singled home LeMahieu
  • The Yankees added a run in the bottom of the 6th as Volt smacked a solo blast to left-center 
  • The Yankees added 2 more runs in the bottom of the 7th on a 2-run bomb to right-center by Frazier; also scoring Thairo Estrada
  • Deivi Garcia pitching line: 7IP 6H 3R (all earned) 2BB 6K 88 pitches (58 for strikes)
  • The Yankees added a run in the bottom of the 8th as LeMahieu whacked a solo blast to left
  • The Blue Jays got one back in the top of the 9th as Panik doubled home Gurriel Jr.
  • Two batters later, Panik scored on a fielder's choice hit by Fisher 
  • Two batters later, Bo Bichette doubled home Fisher 
  • Final score: Yankees 20 Blue Jays 6

My Take:

  • What an ugly 2nd inning for Taijuan Walker and the Blue Jays, who got lit up for 7 runs (just 1 earned thanks to a missed catch by Derek Fisher) while walking none and striking out 2 
  • The next inning, 2 of the five runs were largely self-inflicted by Shun Yamaguchi, who walked the bases loaded, then hit two batters in a row, before giving up a bases clearing double
  • Santiago Espinal pitched the 8th inning, as he did 5 days ago when the Mets blew out the Blue Jays. 
  • Innings 2-4, the Yankees sent 29 batters to the plate and scored 16 runs on 11 hits, a horrible fielding error by Derek Fisher, 2 hit batters, 4 walks (and 2 more walks after the 16th run had scored). And the damage could have been even worse with a runner stranded on 2nd base in the 3rd inning and the bases left loaded in the 4th inning
  • Ken Giles' 2nd appearance went slightly better. Although he gave up a HR on the 3rd pitch (he gave up a HR Friday on his first pitch coming off the IL), he had a strikeout and needed just 8 pitches to get through the inning
  • Vladimir Guerrero and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. combined for half the offence tonight (6-9 with 4 runs scored and 3RBI)
  • The Blue Jays left 8 runners on base, which would have still left them trailing by 6 had they cashed in all 8
  • Up next, the Blue Jays try to even the series and back into a tie for 2nd in the AL East. They will be  in tough with 2019 Cy Young finalist Gerritt Cole on the bump for the Yankees. The Blue Jays will counter with Tanner Roark