Blue Jays locked into a pitching battle with White Sox through six. Seventh inning continues to be a problem for Toronto
FINAL: White Sox 4, @BlueJays 0.
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) April 28, 2016
Tonight’s matchup, the third and final game of the series, featured two pitchers who have been on top of their game early this season in Jose Quintana and Marco Estrada. To help combat Chicago’s lefty, Toronto moved newly brought up Matt Dominguez to first base, in place of Justin Smoak. Outside of that, the Blue Jays lineup was back to normal including Russell Martin behind the plate.
Both Estrada and Quintana traded zeroes on the scoreboard through six complete innings on this night. Both pitchers were mixing up their pitches and crossing up hitters well.
Estrada seemed to run into some issues with his shoulder early in the game, reaching to it multiple times while on the mound and in the dugout. On multiple occasions he went down the tunnel with the pitching coach and head trainer. Fortunately it seemed nothing major as he continued without any apparent problems.
Whatever seems to be bothering Estrada’s shoulder isn’t having a negative affect on his pitching. Has retired 11 straight. #BlueJays
— Barry Davis (@SNBarryDavis) April 28, 2016
Unfortunately he was unable to escape the sixth inning. After surrendering a leadoff single and one out walk, he was able to get to two outs before surrendering triple to Dioner Navarro. Estrada gave way to Jesse Chavez at this point who gave up a triple of his own to center fielder Austin Jackson, leaving his final line at (6 2/3 IP, 3H, 3ER, 4BB, 5K) despite his strong start.
The Blue Jays offense was stymied all evening by Chicago’s starting pitcher. Quintana worked the edges of the strike zone all evening and often had Toronto’s lineup talking to themselves. The lefty gave way to reliever Zach Duke (7th), Nate Jones (8th), and David Robertson (9th) who combined to shut down the Blue Jays for the remainder.
Tonight’s 4-0 loss marks the first time the Blue Jays have been shutout in a game this season. It also capped a series sweep for the White Sox, where Toronto found themselves outscored 21-6 over the three games.
Play of the Game:
— Aldo Soto (@AldoSoto21) April 28, 2016
As painful as it it, the game ball tonight goes to White Sox starter Jose Quintana. The crafty lefty worked a magnificent game. Have to give credit where credit is due.
— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) April 28, 2016
Tonight’s turning point came with 2 outs, thanks to ex-Blue Jay, Dioner Navarro. After Todd Frazier singled and a Brett Lawrie walk, Estrada was able to strikeout a Avisail Garcia, but left an 0-2 change-up up just enough for Navarro to stroke it into the gap for a 2 RBI triple (Yes, Navarro actually got a triple!)
News & Notes:
One positive piece of news to come through Blue Jays land today was regarding Devon Travis. According to reports he will get in three or four at-bats and run the bases, but will not take any turns on the defensive side just yet.
— Shi Davidi (@ShiDavidi) April 27, 2016
Toronto has an off day on Thursday, but will be travelling to Tampa to take on the Rays in a weekend series beginning Friday evening. The Blue Jays will see pitchers Drew Smyly, Chris Archer, and Jake Odorizzi. Be sure to check out Jays From the Couch for our series preview and daily coverage.
*Featured Image Credit: Keith Allison-flickr – UNDER CC BY-SA 2.0
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Wade is a long time baseball fan who has been involved with the game for over 30 years. Including as a former college player, amateur pitching coach, and blogger.