Saturday, July 29, 2023

Game #105 LA Angels (54-51) @ Toronto Blue Jays (59-46) - game recap


Alejandro Kirk scored three times and drove in three runs in a 6-1 win over the Angels

After a solid win on the backs of a solid effort from Kevin Gausman and Whit Merrifield leading the offense, the Blue Jays were looking to make it the straight wins and their 21st series win of the season. Jordan Romano was placed on the 15- day IL with lower back inflammation. Nate Pearson was recalled from AAA- ball.  Alek Manoah got the start with Alejandro Kirk behind the plate. Like yesterday, the struggling George Springer was batting 5th with Whit Merrifield, who was in LF today,  batting leadoff. Santiago Espinal got the start at 2B and Danny Jansen served as DH. Could the Blue Jays extend the win streak to three games while notching their 21st series win and 12th season series win? Here is today's game recap. 

Game Highlights:

  • The Angels opened the scoring in the top of the 5th on a bases loaded hit by pitch to Taylor Ward that forced in Luis Rengifo. Ward was forced to leave the game after getting hit in the face by that pitch
  • Alek Manoah pitching line: 4.1IP 4H 1R (earned) 3BB 6K 82 pitches (53 for strikes)
  • The Blue Jays took the lead in the bottom half of the inning as Santiago Espinal whacked a 2-run jack to left; also scoring Alejandro Kirk
  • Reid Detmers pitching line: 4.2IP 3H 2R (both earned) 2BB 5K 91 pitches (61 for strikes)
  • The Blue Jays added a run in the bottom of the 7th as Kirk smacked a solo blast down the left field line
  • Three batters later, Whit Merrifield doubled scoring Kevin Kiermaier
  • The Blue Jays added a pair of runs in the bottom of the 8th as Kirk hammered a 2- run bomb to the second deck in left; also scoring Danny Jansen
  • Final score; Blue Jays 6 Angels 1

My Take:

  • Woof, a great outing by Alek Manoah ruined by one pitch that got away from him.  The third-year righty, who is trying to rescue his 2023 season after a disastrous first half, was pitching arguably his best game of the season, allowing just four hits,  3 walks and striking out 6 up to the fateful moment where a sinker got away from him and Taylor Ward was hit in the face. The Angels left fielder left the playing field on a golf cart. It's pretty clear that Manoah is still working on his command given the three walks and 2 hit batters, including Shohei Ohtani. Manoah certainly didn't mean to hit Ward, but one hopes this incident doesn't shatter his confidence. 
  • The bullpen was solid, allowing 2 hits and 2 walks (1 intentional) while striking out 9 batters over the last 4.2 innings. With Jordan Romano now out for at least 2 weeks,  it'll likely be bullpen by committee until his return. Erik Swanson and Yimi Garcia will likely be the pitchers to pitch the 9th in save situations. When Chad Green makes his debut, he could be asked to close as well.
  • Alejandro Kirk had a huge day, driving in three runs and scoring three times. He also went deep in back to back innings. 
  • Meanwhile, George Springer continues to struggle. The Blue Jays right fielder struck out three times times. He's now hitless in 5 games and has just 2 his in his last 10 games. Could it be that Springer is playing through an injury? 
  • Up next, the Blue Jays go for their 4th straight win and 6th series sweep of the season. Jose Berrios starts against Angels lefty Tyler Anderson