|Alejandro Kirk drove in a pair of runs, scored one himself and had a 3rd run score off a fielding error on a sharp grounder hit by him in a 4-2 come-from-behind victory over the Royals|
After a huge come-from behind win yesterday, the Blue Jays were looking to finish the unofficial first half with 3 straight wins. Ace Jose Berrios got the start with Danny Jansen behind the plate. George Springer got the complete day off with Bradley Zimmer in CF. Alejandro Kirk served as DH. Could the Blue Jays make it three straight wins? Here is today's game recap.
- The Royals opened the scoring in the top of the 1st as Edward Olivares singled scoring Nicky Lopez
- The Royals added a run in the top of the 2nd as Nick Pratto whacked a solo blast to right
- The Blue Jays got one back in the bottom of the 3rd on a fielding error by Bobby Witt Jr. on a ball hit by Alejandro Kirk that scored Santiago Espinal
- A batter later, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. scored on a sac fly by Bo Bichette
- Kris Bubic pitching line: 7IP 5H 2R (none earned) 0BB 4K 92 pitches (60 for strikes)
- Jose Berrios pitching line: 6.1IP 7H 2R (both earned) 1BB 7K 88 pitches (59 for strikes)
- The Blue Jays took the lead in the bottom of the 8th as Kirk smacked a 2-run blast to left and into the Blue Jays bullpen; also scoring Guerrero Jr.
- Jordan Romano pitched a perfect 9th for his 20th save of the season.
- Final score: Blue Jays 4 Royals 2
- Jose Berrios threw 6.1 strong innings, giving up a pair of runs on 7 hits while walking 1 and striking out 7. Berrios had a rough start in the 1st inning, giving up a run on 3 hitsm which gave fans flashbacks to his brutal opening day start when he retired just one batter. He settled down after giving up a leadoff home run in the second inning, retiring 7 straight. Overall, he should be satisfied with his final start of the unofficial 1st half.
- The bullpen did its job, retiring the final 6 Royals batters in order. Closer Jordan Romano got to exact some revenge. After giving up a go-ahead HR to Vinnie Pasquantino in yesterday's game, Romano struck out the Royals DH leading off in the 9th inning today.
- Alejandro Kirk had a big role in today's win. The Blue Jays opening run scored on a fielding error on a sharp grounder off his bat and he put the Blue Jays ahead with a moonshot into the Blue Jays bullpen. Kirk will be the first Blue Jays catcher to start an all-star game Tuesday
- Fellow all-star Vlad scored twice today, including the game-tying run in the 3rd inning.
- The Blue Jays were 0-4 with runners in scoring position
- The Blue Jays finish the 1st half with 50 wins, 3rd in the AL East, 14.5 games behind the 1st place Yankees. The Blue Jays are 3rd in the WC standings, 2 games up on the Red Sox. If the playoffs started tomorrow, the Blue Jays would play a best-of-3 against the Twins, who have the 3rd best record of the division leaders. The Astros and Yankees would receive byes to the divisional round and the Rays and Mariners would meet in the other best-of-3 series with the Rays having home field advantage.
- Up next, after 4 days off for the all-star break, the Blue Jays begin the second half with a 3-game set against the Red Sox at Fenway Park. The Blue Jays have won 7 of the 10 meetings in the season series thus far and have outscored the Red Sox 42-32. Neither team has set their rotation for the series yet.