The Toronto Blue Jays try to salvage at least one game from the Oakland Athletics, with Jharel Cotton standing in their way.
After dropping the first two games of the series in Oakland, the Jays stumbling offense attempted to take down the struggling Jharel Cotton, countering with Francisco Liriano, making his second start since returning from the disabled list on May 10th. Here’s how it all went down.
Blue Jays 7 R, 6 H, 1 E
Atheltics 5 R, 8 H, 0 E
Toronto Blue Jays
— Shi Davidi (@ShiDavidi) June 7, 2017
A's today pic.twitter.com/9fGaqth56J
— John Shea (@JohnSheaHey) June 7, 2017
Starting Pitcher Match-up
Starting pitcher match-up, as always, from the excellent Baseball Savant.
All of the Jays runs came on home runs, which is a dangerous way to live. In the 10th inning, Josh Donaldson popped the one that mattered the most:
Francisco Liriano was solid, but his line didn’t reflect that. All runs aside from his first were a result of poor defense. Over five innings, Liriano allowed four runs (three “earned”) on six hits and a walk. Take Rajai Davis out of the game, though, and three of the runs disappear.
Danny Barnes‘ change-up was a thing of beauty, and he recorded two waving strikeouts on the pitch in the sixth inning. He finished with three strikeouts over two very strong innings, striking out
Barry Bonds Rajai Davis on a high fastball to end the seventh inning.
Joe Smith continued the bullpen excellence, striking out two A’s (but let’s be fair, they strike out a lot) in the eighth inning as well. Roberto Osuna lightly closed the door as if quietly exiting his favorite bibliopole, allowing Rajai Davis to score the fifth Oakland run, but struck out Jed Lowrie to end the game.
The defense was agonous on Wednesday, with Troy Tulowitzki with the rare clank and Ryan Goins botching a double-play attempt, resulting in the second Oakland run. In the fifth, Rajai Davis got himself within one home run short of The Cycle as Chris Coghlan boxed a flyball at the fence. Davis scored on the very next play. Almost immediately, Kevin Pillar’s Show Dive cost Liriano yet another out.
The Blue Jays had Jharel Cotton – the A’s struggling starter – on the ropes in the second inning, but refused to bother him after the second inning. In what looked like it would be a short outing, Cotton bounced back, striking four Blue Jays while the Athletics chipped away at the lead and eventually tied the game up.
While the Jays scored their runs on the HR, they were completely deflated otherwise. Jays batters reached base just once after Cotton left the game and struck out five times before Frankie Montas served up the two-run bomb to Josh Donaldson.
- SportsNet’s Kristina Rutherford has an awesome interview with the awesome Kelly Gruber. Go on over and give it a read.
- Ezequiel Carrera was on the bench, giving way to a rare start for Chris Coghlan and leaving the foaming masses to push the haterade back on to the shelf of the fridge. Will Coghlan see more starts now that Devon Travis is on the shelf? Maybe. But maybe they should give someone else a shot.
- On At The Letters, Jim Callis joined Ben Nicholson-Smith to discuss the upcoming MLB entry draft.
Player of the Game
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Roy’s earliest memories all involve baseball from the early 90’s and the Blue Jays dream teams. He became a Blue Jays fan while watching Carlos Delgado and Shawn Green evolve in Syracuse, NY at the run-down confines of MacArthur Stadium, nestled between highway and swamp. A lifelong baseball player, Roy still plays (P, C, 2B, 3B) in the 25+ Syracuse MSBL for the Liverpool Mets. He watches almost all games with his best buddy Sebastian, a five year old Pug, who could care less.