Saturday, June 23, 2018

Game #75 Toronto Blue Jays (34-41) @ LA Angels (41-35) - game recap

Albert Pujols was 2-3 at the plate and scored the game winning run as the Angels beat the Blue Jays 2-1 in a pitcher's duel.

With all the news in Blue Jays land today, this game feels lik-e an afterthought. Roberto Osuna was handed a 75 game suspension, retroactive to when he was first placed on admin leave, Steve Pearce made his return to the lineup after missing more than a month with an oblique injury,Danny Barnes replaced him on the DL with knee tendonitis and new papa Sam Gaviglio returned from his paternity leave. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. was sent to Buffalo to make room on the roster. With Stroman returning tomorrow, Sanchez will likely be joining Danny Barnes on the DL. Anyway, the Blue Jays were looking to even up this four game series after having their butts handed to them last night. Here is tonight's game recap.

Game highlights

  • The Angels took the lead in the bottom of the 1st as Albert Pujols doubled scoring Justin Upton
  • The next batter, Luis Valbuena singled to score Pujols
  • The Blue Jays got one back in the top of the 7th as Devon Travis doubled home Aledmys Diaz
  • Andrew Heaney pitching line: 7IP 9H 1R (earned) 0BB 4K 96 pitches (66 for strikes)
  • Marco Estrada pitching line: 7IP 3H 2R (both earned) 2BB 7K 100 pitches (56 for strikes)
  • Final score: Angels 2 Blue Jays 1

My take 

  • Key play in the top of the 7th #1: Randal Grichuk was called out after initially being called safe on  bang-bang play leading off the inning
  • Key play in the 7th #2 Steve Pearce was called safe on a ball that was trapped by Angels CF Michael Hermosillo (initially he was called out on the play). Devon Travis was told to remain on second and was not allowed to advance to 3rd. Unfortunately, the Blue Jays wasted the extra out and were unable to get the tying run home that inning.
  • Marco Estrada gave the Blue Jays exactly what they needed after the bullpen pitched 7 innings yesterday. Estrada threw 7 innings of 3 hit ball. It's just too bad the offence wasn't able to give him any run support. Estrada has been great in June, pitching at least 6 innings and giving up 2 runs or less every start.
  • Steve Pearce had an adventurous first game back from the DL. In the first inning he sipped going after a double hit by Pujols and ended up looking comical in the route he took to the ball. In his last AB in the 8th, he a flyball to center that was initially called an out, but was quicjkly overturned by replay as the ball was clearly trapped. Pearce was 3-4 and is now the only Blue Jays batting .300.
  • Pearce's return creates a log jam for playing time in the outfield. The Blue Jays now have 5 players vying for playing time at 3 different positions. Center field and right field are pretty set with Kevin Pillar and Randal Grichuk both playing mostly every day. Curtis Granderson will likely start against right-handed pitchers and pinch hit late in games, as he did tonight. Steve Pearce and Teoscar Hernandez will probably platoon vs lefties. 
  • The Blue Jays had their chances today but they were 0-4 with runners in scoring position today (Aledmys Diaz was on 1st when Devon Travis doubled him home)
  • Up next, the Blue Jays welcome back Marcus Stroman to the rotation, after he missed the last 6 weeks with shoulder inflammation. Toronto hitters will be facing Jamie Barria, who is making just the 10th start of his career. The Blue Jays did not face him in the series in Toronto last month