Friday, July 5, 2019

Game #88 Boston Red Sox (46-41) @ Toronto Blue Jays (33-55) - game recap

Marco Hernandez hit a clutch pinch hit HR in the 9th as the Red Sox edged the Blue Jays 8-7

Here we are, the rubber match for bragging rights this week. It was a bullpen day for both teams with Marcus Stroman wisely deciding to skip his last scheduled start before the all-star break with the pec injury he suffered last start still nagging him. Quite frankly, Stroman should also skip the all-star game and completely heal. Randal Grichuk got a complete day off with Teoscar Hernandez in CF and Eric Sogard making his first career start in RF. Sogard played 10 games in LF over 2 seasons for the Brewers 2017-18. Danny Jansen and his hot stick are in the lineip as well. The Blue Jays rookie catcher  has a chance to reach the Mendoza line (he came into this game batting .197). Could the Blue Jays win their second series in a row vs. Boston? No Vlad in the lineup for the second time in less than a week. (They took two of three in Fenway Park two weeks ago.) Here is tonight's game recap.

Game Highlights:
  • The Red Sox opened the scoring in the top of the 1st as Rafael Devers whacked a solo shot to right and into the Red Sox bullpen
  • Derek Law pitching line: 0.2IP 2H 1R (earned) 0BB 0K 13 pitches (6 for strikes)
  • The Blue Jays took the lead in the bottom half of the inning as Rowdy Tellez singled home Freddy Galvis and Cavan Biggio
  • The Blue Jays added a run in the bottom of the 2nd as Danny Jansen smashed one to dead center
  • Hector Velazquez pitching line: 2.1IP 5H 3R (all earned) 2BB 1K 50 pitches (28 for strikes)
  • The Blue Jays added a run in the bottom of the 4th as Jansen crushed his second of the game to dead center
  • Three batters later, Galvis hit an opposite field 2-run shot that just hung fair in left; also scoring Brandon Drury
  • The Red Sox got one back in the top of the 6th as Xander Bogaerts singled home Mookie Betts
  • A batter later, JD Martinez singled scoring Devers
  • Three batters later, Bogaerts scored on a fielder's choice hit by Jackie Bradley Jr.
  • A batter later, Michael Chavis smashed a three-run blast to left and into the Blue Jays bullpen also scoring Martinez and Christian Vazquez
  • The Blue Jays tied the game in the bottom of the 8th as Eric Sogard doubled home Jansen
  • The Red Sox took the lead in the top of the 9th as Marco Hernandez banged a solo shot to left
  • Final score: Red Sox 8 Blue Jays 7
My Take: 
  • Tough one for the bullpen today. Marcus Stroman was unable to make his scheduled start as he was still not feeling right after pulling himself from the game with a pec cramp. Derek Law started this one and got 2 outs, giving up one run and 2 hits. Thomas Pannone took over and actually pitched very well through 4.1 innings, getting 8 in a row out before a one out JD Martinez single in the 4th. Pannone was clearly tiring in the 6th, allowing 2 runs on 3 hits and a walk. Credit the Red Sox for working the count. Xander Bogaerts had a 10 pitch AB before smacking a single up the middle. Tim Mayza then came in and promptly allowed both inherited runnners to score and two that were hhis responsibility, all capped by a three-run HR off the bat of Michael Chavis. Ken Giles, usually Mr. Reliable, gave up a solo HR in the 9th that stood up as the game winner. 
  • Perhaps the bullpen deserves a bit of a pass with fatigue from essentially three bullpen days in a row. First Trent Thornton was knocked around and pulled 2.2 innings into his start. Then, the Blue Jays had their regular bullpen day with no reliable starter available (Ryan Borucki is currently on a rehab assignment and should return shortly after the all-star break). Finally, Stroman was unable to pitch today. Tomorrow, Aaron Sanchez starts and he's struggled to gobble up innings.
  • The bats got off to a quick start with 2 runs on 2 hits and a pair of walks in the 1st inning, and a solo HR by the Blue Jays hottest hitter, Danny Jansen in the 2nd inning, The Blue Jays catcher was 3-4 with 3 runs scored and a pair of RBI. The trio of hits bumped his average up to .208. Freddy Galvis (2-5, 2 runs scored and 2RBI) and Brandon Drury (2-5, run scored) also had strong nights. Cavan Biggio did well to draw three walks. Rowdy Tellez also drew a pair of walks.
  • The Blue Jays got unlucky in the 9th when Vlad pinch hit and just missed a pitch from a tired Brandon Workman, who was pitching his second inning and was nearing 40 pitches
  • Up next, the Blue Jays begin their final series before the all-star break and this homestand (they will begin the post-all-star schedule in NY in a week's time. Aaron Sanchez gets the start. If there's anyone who's happy to turn the page on June it's Sanchez, who was 0-6 in the month  with a brutal 12.00ERA and 27 innings. The Orioles will counter with righty Dylan Bundy.