The Jays rode a great pitching performance and a couple of good hitting performances to a 6-3 victory to take the series from the Yankees.
On the Mound:
Brett Cecil had a bit of trouble early on, giving up a couple of hard hit balls in the first and second and a two-run Marcus Thames home run in the 4th, but really settled down after that, pitching five more scoreless innings after the dinger. For the game, Cecil went 8 innings and gave up just the two runs on seven hits. He struck out 5 and walked two. Best of all, he induced 15 grounders and just 6 batted balls in the air, a great recipe for sustainable success.
At the Plate:
Fred Lewis (0-3 but with 2 walks) walked to lead off the game and Vernon Wells smashed a triple to score Lewis, then scored himself on a passed ball to give the Jays a two-run lead right off the bat. Wells doubled the lead when he came up again by ripping a home run on a very high fastball, cashing Jose Bautista who had walked. The following inning, Wells came up again with the bases loaded and he ripped a shot up the middle.
Derek Jeter Robinson Cano managed to dive and come up with it, but he couldn't get Bautista hustling toward second and had no chance at all at getting Vernon at first. Great baserunning by both Jays and it resulted in a run. Unfortunately, with the bases still loaded and Javier Vasquez in to relieve Phil Hughes, Adam Lind lined out to right field to end the rally. Aaron Hill added a run to the Jays' tally in the following inning when he ripped a home run to left field. Wells missed his chance at the cycle (he only got 4 at-bats) when he ripped a line drive to the left field wall but it was caught. A great day at the plate, he hit everything very hard. Aaron Hill also had a nice day at the plate after being dropped in the lineup, with a home run and 2 walks. Hill had several drawn out at-bats and looked very good at the plate. Lyle Overbay was the only Jay who failed to reach.
From the Pen:
With Cecil at 106 pitches, Jason Frasor came in to pitch the 9th. Frasor had sharp stuff and got the first two hitters but seemed gun-shy about challenging the next two batters, Austin Kearns and Brett Gardner , walking them both on 3-2 pitches. That's not something you want to see in a late-inning reliever. Cito had seen enough and with the tying run on deck (and therefore a save situation), he went to Kevin Gregg. Gregg gave up a single up the middle and then hit Derek Jeter, but got Curtis Granderson on a rather well-hit ball to center to end the game.
On the whole, can't complain about taking a series from the Yankees. Was a fun game thread so if you didn't this time, join in next time. Jays of the day: Wells (with a whopping .359 WPA), Cecil (.199), and Hill (.105). As I mentioned in the game thread, this pulls Vernon ahead in the Jay-of-the-day competition between he and Bautista. Wells now has 26 while Jose has 25. Scott Downs and Lyle Overbay are in a distant third with 17 apiece, so it's really a two-man race.
The Jays remain in the Big Smoke today while their cross-Great Lake rivals the Detroit Tigers come to town. It's an interesting matchup of two young pitchers as Ricky Romero goes for Toronto and Max Scherzer pitches for Detroit.
Today's title from Matt Sharp's DC-to-NYC-bound song "Thoughts from a Slow Train."