Friday, June 14, 2024

Game #69 - Cleveland Guardians (44-23) @ Toronto Blue Jays (33-36) - game recap


Ernie Clement had a pair of hits and scored the Blue Jays only run in a 3-1 loss to the Guardians

After an off-day yesterday, the Blue Jays returned home for a week as they begin a 2-week stretch with the rematch with the opponent a week apart. Last season, the Guardians won the season series 4-3 with both teams scoring 24 runs each. Daniel Vogelbach was DFA'd. Vogelbach batted .186 with 1HR and 8 RBI over 31 games and 70AB this season. Addison Barger was recalled from AAA-ball in his place. Kevin Gausman got the start with Danny Jansen behind the plate. Vlad was back in the lineup and at 1B after a complete day off Wednesday. Justin Turner served as DH. Could the Blue Jays start the weekend with a win? Here is tonight's game recap.

Game Highlights:

  • The Guardians opened the scoring in the top of the 2nd as Daniel Schneemann doubled scoring Will Brennan
  • The Guardians added a run in the top of the 4th as Brennan smacked a solo blast to the opposite field in left and into the Blue Jays bullpen
  • The Guardians added a run in the top of the 5th as Andres Gimenez singled scoring Brayan Rocchio
  • The Blue Jays got one back in the bottom of the 6th as Davis Schneider singled home Ernie Clement
  • JT Allen pitching line: 5IP 3H 1R (earned) 3BB 3K 84 pitches (47 for strikes)
  • Kevin Gausman pitching line: 5.1IP 8H 3R (all earned) 0BB 6K 99 pitches (65 fo-r strikes)
  • Emmanuel Clase pitched a perfect 9th for his 21st save of the season
  • Final score: Guardians 3 Blue Jays 1

My Take:

  • Kevin Gausman battled through 5.1 innings, giving up 3 runs on 8 hits while walking none and striking out 6. It was not his most efficient outing, needing 99 pitches for 16 outs. Gausman has not looked like he did his first 2 seasons in Toronto. Whether that is just him regressing to the mean or whether he is battling through an injury. Gausman did miss part of spring training and the first week of the regular season after he did not bounce back after a side session early in spring training. Here's hoping the issue is minor, if physical, or just mechanical.
  • The bullpen threw 3.2 shutout innings, allowing just one hit, walking none and striking out 1. Lefty Brendon Little has settled in nicely into a middle relief role and has worked multiple innings for the Blue Jays, a huge plus with the team basically facing a bullpen day every 5th day until Yuriel Rodriguez is ready to slide into the 5th starter's role
  • And then there's the offence, which continues to struggle to manufacture anything. Tonight, Davis Schneider drove in Ernie Clement in the 5th inning with an RBI single. Now that veterans Cavan Biggio and Daniel Vogelbach are gone, the Blue Jays will be relying on the next generation of prospects (Schneider, Barger, Clement and Spencer Horwitz to carry the team offensively. Look for them to be playing most days and to be in key parts of the lineup, or the top half of the order. If the team is out of it, you could well see some of the soon to be expiring contracts, such as Danny Jansen, Yusei Kikuchi, and others moved at the deadline. Heck, if they get the right trade offer, Bo Bichette and Vlad could be on the move too. If the team keeps puttering along offensively and losing more than they win, the lineup you saw tonight will look bery different than the one say 2 months from now
  • Speaking of the next gen. of players, Shneider and Clement were a combined 0-22. Vlad, IKF, George Springer and Bo Bichette each drew a walk. It's puzzling and disturbing how far this offence has regressed in the last couple of seasons, especially Bo and Vlad. In 2021, Vlad hit .311 with 48HR, 111RBI and finished 2nd in MVP voting. This season, he has managed just 7HR and 30RBI. Bichette led the AL in hits in both 2021 and 2022 and was the Blue Jays most consistent hitter up until this season, where his average is down to .240 with 4HR and 28 RBI. 
  • Up next, the Blue Jays try to even the series and avoid their 11th series loss of the season. It will be a bullpen day tomorrow with one of Bowden Francis or Trevor Richards likely serving as the opener. The Guardians will counter with righty Carlos Carrasco