The Jays dropped their second straight game tonight with a tepid hitting display and a shaky start from Shawn Hill.
On the Mound
It was great to see GTA native and former Expo Shawn Hill make his Blue Jay debut, but it wasn't necessarily a start to remember. Hill was in and out of trouble, mostly in, and it took some timely ground balls to get him through 5 at all. But he did make some timely pitches and he had his sinker working at times, so it wasn't all bad. He missed his spots too many times for a pitcher with his stuff, but on the other hand, it was his first major league start in a very long time, and in his hometown to boot. Some shaky defense, including a Travis Snider error, a John Buck dropped ball, and a miscue on a bunt by HIll himself didn't help. Actually, Hill had a shot to get out of it all with just one earned run to his name, but he didn't win inherited runner blackjack so he got tagged with three. Still a very happy day for Hill, I'm sure, hence the title.
At the Plate:
It was a very tepid showing by the Jays tonight at the plate, with solo shots by Lyle Overbay and Jose Bautista (his 44th) accounting for the two Jays runs. Only Bautista reached base more than once, and his home run put the Jays within striking distance at 4-2, but they couldn't muster any more offense than that.
From the Pen:
Jesse Carlson only faced one batter, Mitch Moreland, who doubled in two runs that were credited to Hill. Robert Ray came in and did a nice job over the next 2 2/3 innings, keeping Texas off the board and giving the Jays a chance. Scott Downs pitched a clean 9th to get some work in.
Bautista was the Jay of the Day, with honourable mention going to Ray. Also, an honourary Jay of the Day (hopefully the first of many) goes to Zach Stewart, who had an unbelievable start for New Hampshire in their playoff game against Trenton. Stewart, matched up against Andy Pettitte making a rehab start, was sensational over 7 scoreless innings, striking out 10 and walking just one, with just three singles against him. And I haven't even gotten to the best yet - out of 11 batted ball outs Stewart got, 10 were on the ground. 10 Ks and 10 groundouts in a game, that's a recipe for pitching success if I ever heard one. The game is still going on, and it's still 0-0 in the 11th as I type this so it'll be interesting to see how it turns out.
Today's title from the great DC song "Spider in the Snow" by the Dismemberment Plan. Finally cooling down here, which is great news.