In a dramatic game that saw both teams have an opportunity to walk away with a victory, the Blue Jays came up just short
Final Score: Blue Jays – 6 Yankees – 7
WP: Shreve (2) LP: Grilli (5) SV: Parker (1)
Tonight the Toronto Blue Jays would come into action looking to bounce back after a game 1 loss to the Yankees. Sending Aaron Sanchez to the mound, the Jays would hope for another strong start.
The Jays would get just that from Aaron Sanchez. Sanchez would look very impressive through seven innings of work, only giving up three runs to the Yankees. The first run would be a solo blast to right field off the bat of Brian McCann. After the one blemish Sanchez would continue to roll through until the seventh. After an Aaron Judge single Tyler Austin would hit a home run to right field as well. Sanchez would exit the game after the seventh.
The offense unfortunately did not give Sanchez too much run support early. An Edwin Encarnacion solo shot in the first would be promising, but rookie Luis Cessa would settle down and pitch an impressive 5.2 innings. Cessa would only allow one more run in the 5th, when Kevin Pillar would score on a Jose Bautista single.
Down 3-2 entering the 8th, the bats would finally come alive and plate a couple of runs. A EE ground out and Martin strike out wouldn’t look promising to start the inning, but it would all start on 2. Troy Tulowitzki would single and be replaced by pinch runner Dalton Pompey. Pompey would advance on a passed ball with Melvin Upton Jr. at the plate, who would walk in his at bat. With both speedsters on, brand new Roberto Clemente nominee Kevin Pillar would come to the plate, and he wouldn’t disappoint. Already 2 for 2 on the day, Pillar would double to left scoring both. Chasen Shreve would enter the game to strike out Devon Travis to end the inning.
Up by one the Jays would go to their 8th inning guy Jason Grilli to secure the hold. Unfortunately the normally stable Grilli would not succeed today. A lead off walk to Jacoby Ellsbury would come in to score on a Didi Gregorius triple (that was the result of a very poorly played ball from Kevin Pillar). Starlin Castro would then bring Didi in on the next at bat with a sacrifice fly to right. Grilli continued to struggle, walking Brian McCann in the next at bat, following it up by giving up a two run shot to right to Chase Headley. Bo Schultz would enter to stop the bleeding, striking out Aaron Judge.
With Dellin Betances entering for the save, the Jays wouldn’t go down without a fight. Jose Bautista and Josh Donaldson would start the innings with walks bringing Edwin to the plate with two on and none out. After a passed ball that would advance the runners, and a completely blown call on catcher’s interference, Edwin would still get on base on an infield single that would also score Bautista. Russell Martin would then strike out, and Dioner Navarro would pinch hit and work a walk . Melvin Upton Jr. would do the same for the fourth time that inning loading the bases.
Girardi had seen enough from his closer, and replaced him with Blake Parker. Parker wouldn’t let his manager down striking out Kevin Pillar on what was a very underwhelming at bat, and getting Smoak to fly out to deep left (on what would end up being the JFtC play of the game).
PLAY OF THE GAME
Tonight’s play of the game wouldn’t come until the final out. With the bases loaded Justin Smoak would blast a ball to left. He’d come up just short however, with Brett Gardner making an impressive snow cone catch to seal the Jays fate.
Tonight’s JFtC game ball goes to Aaron Sanchez, despite pitching in a losing effort. Sanchez went 7 strong allowing only 5 H and 3 ER with 4 SO. Sanchez gave put his team in an excellent position to win, they just couldn’t capitalize.
Chase Headley‘s home run in the bottom of the 8th is today’s JFtC turning point. Despite the Jays already being down 5-4 at that point, it was Headley’s home run that put the game just out of reach for the Jays.
NEWS & NOTES
Today Kevin Pillar was nominated for the Roberto Clemente award. Be sure to vote for him early and often!
— Mike Wilner (@Wilnerness590) September 6, 2016
— Mike Wilner (@Wilnerness590) September 6, 2016
Toronto looks to prevent the sweep against the New York Yankees tomorrow. Check out our series preview for pitching match ups and all the details you need here.
*FEATURED IMAGE CREDIT: Arturo Pardavila III (Flickr) UNDER CC BY-SA 2.0
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A group benefits consultant by day, Dustin is sports fanatic who loves talking sports more than anything. A self-glossed stats geek, he loves diving into the numbers behind the game. A proud father of 2 amazing kids, Dustin was born in Calgary, and now lives in Morinville.