That might have been the best inning of baseball I've ever watched and one of the best games I've seen. In the 8th inning Eric Thames started us off with a homer, Jose Bautista followed him for back-to-back shots. Then, after a Adam Lind single and a Juan Rivera fly out, Edwin Encarnacion pounded another out. I was very surprised they left Cliff Lee in to face Edwin, Lee had clearly lost it.
Even before the 8th we were getting some offense against Lee. Rajai Davis led off the 3rd inning with a triple and scored on a John McDonald ground out. Then in the 5th, with 1 out, Davis singled and stole both 2nd and 3rd and scored on a Aaron Hill single. In the 6th Jose Bautista started things off with a single, Adam Lind followed with a single. Then Juan Rivera hit a fly to shallow center. Shane Victorina looked pretty awkward trying to get it out of his glove and then rolled his ankle and fell while making the throw and Bautista scored.
Jo-Jo Reyes had a terrible 2nd inning, giving up 5 hits and 2 ground rule doubles, totaling 4 runs, but after that he settled down and gave us 6 innings. In all he gave up 8 hits, 2 walks and 4 earned. He didn't strikeout anyone and he wasn't keeping the ball down but he kept us in the game. Not that we thought we were in the game, when we were down by 4 against Cliff Lee.
Marc Rzepczynski pitched a quick 7th, got the first out in the 8th and then gave up a double. Octavio Dotel came in and picked the Shane Victorino off 2nd. It was a big out, because, pinch-hitter Raul Ibanez hit a double right after that. If Victorino had scored, we would have been down by 2 again and who knows what would have happened after that. Dotel got out of the 8th and pitched a 3 up 3 down 9th, picking up the win.
Jays of the Day are Bautista (.262 WPA), Thames (.243), Lind (.137) and Dotel (.112). I'm also going to give one to EE for the 2 run homer (edit) and Rajai Davis . We may have already had a lead but those two extra runs were good to have. Reyes (-.141) and Rivera (-.113) had suckage numbers. Rivera for the last time ever as a Jay. Bye Juan. You did give us some good moments.
It was great to see the offense against Lee. Davis had 3 hits and 3 stolen bases. So good to see Davis hitting (and stealing) again. Thames, Bautista and Lind had 2 hits each. I rarely jump out of my seat, watching a game at home on TV, but that Thames homer to tie the game did it. Only J.P. Arencibia (rough day with 4 strikeouts) and John McDonald had 0 for days. Mac drove in a run though.
Even with only winning the one game, that was a great series. Our offense was very good weekend against the great Phillies starting rotation. And it was nice to see fans at Rogers Centre, I hope they keep coming back.
When will opposing starting pitchers learn not to get Bautista mad? I guess I should hope they don't. If you missed it, to end the 3rd inning, Jose Bautista struck out on a border line pitch. Jose questioned the umpire and Lee, while walking off the field, Cliff yelled at Jose. Big mistake. Jose had a single and a homer after that.
Tomorrow afternoon the Jays are in Boston for a July 4 game. 1:00 Eastern start time. Brandon Morrow (4-4, 4.56) goes against John Lackey (5-7, 6.81).