After a solid win that the bullpen nearly blew, the Blue Jays were right back at it, trying to make it three straight wins vs. the Indians. This game and the next week's worth of games loom large as the Blue Jays are facing teams they are either ahead of or chasing in the WC race. Heading into tonight, the Blue Jays are 4th in the WC race, 3 games back of the Oakland A's, who hold the 2nd WC spot. They play 4 in three nights vs. the Red Sox starting tomorrow. The Red Sox currently hold the 1st WC spot by a margin of 3 games. Then the Blue Jays head on a west coast swing that sees them play three in four against the LA Angels, who are 3.5 games back of the Blue Jays in the WC standings. The Blue Jays wrap up my bday week in Seattle, taking on a Mariners team, currently tied in the WC standings. They can't look past tonight's game vs. an Indians team that is 4 games back of the Blue Jays. Ross Stripling got the start. George Springer was back in the field after DH'ing yesterday. Santiago Espinal got the start at the hot corner. Teoscar Hernandez got the full day off with Randal Grichuk in RF and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. in LF. Corey Dickerson served as DH tonight. Could the Blue Jays make it three straight wins? Here is tonight's game recap.
- The Blue Jays opened the scoring in the bottom of the 4th as Bo Bichette bashed a 2-run blast to left-center; also scoring Vladimir Guerrero Jr
- The Blue Jays added a run in the 6th as Bichette singled home Marcus Semien
- Ross Stripling pitching line: 6IP 3H 0R 1BB 6K 98 pitches (66 for strikes)
- Triston McKenzie pitching line: 7IP 5H 3R (all earned) 0BB 4K 90 pitches (66 for strikes)
- Adam Cimber pitched a perfect 9th for his 1st save of the season
- Final score: Blue Jays 3 Imdians 0
- Ross Stripling had his best start in a blue Jays uniform firing 6 shutout innings, scattering three hits while walking 1 and striking out 6. He retired 12 in a row at one point. He got in a bit of a jam in the 1st inning with runners on 1st and 2nd with 1 out, but after recording 2 straight outs, he did not allow a base runner until a one out single in the 2nd. The only thing he might have done better is be as efficient as Indians starter Triston McKenzie, who also got 66 strikes, but with 8 less pitches.
- The bullpen was lights out, allowing just a Tim Mayza 8th inning walk over the final three innings
- It was the Bo Bichette show offensively. The Blue Jays 2nd baseman had 2 of the 5 Blue Jays hits, drove in all three runs and scored one of the three runs off his 2-run bash.
- Vlad, Marcus Semien and Santiago Espinal were the other three Blue Jays to get hits
- The Blue Jays did not draw a walk tonight and did not have a hit after the 6th inning, although Vlad did get on base via a hit by pitch in the 8th
- Up next, the Blue Jays begin a crucial 4 game in three night series vs. the Red Sox. The Blue Jays are just 2 games back of the Red Sox for the 1st WC spot after tonight's win and the Red Sox loss to the Tigers earlier today. Alek Manoah gets the start against Red Sox ace Nathan Eovaldi.