Tom and I decided to tag-team this recap. It's late in the season. Here's his part:
Good thing Mark Buehrle had already passed the 200-inning mark before tonight's game, because he took Steve Pearce line drive off his knee to lead off the fourth inning. Mark was being hit pretty hard before that. He allowed eight hits and three earned in his 3.1 innings. They weren't cheap hit either, he gave up three doubles and a Matt Wieters solo homer.
We got a run in the first inning when Munenori Kawasaki, who reached on a walk, scored from first when he sprinted around the bases on Moises Sierra's easy fly to left field. No one else in baseball would have ran that hard on an fly ball that should have been easily caught, but Orioles left fielder, Jason Pridie had it clank off his glove and Kawasaki scored. Moises, on the other hand, only reached first on the play.
We had a good chance to score in the third inning. Kevin Pillar lead off with a single and Jose Reyes reached on the Orioles second error of the night. But Gibby had Kawasaki (who had four hits in yesterday's game) try to bunt. Munenori popped it up to Wieters. Brett Lawrie followed with a line out and Moises Sierra ground out to end the inning.
Just to comment on Tom's part: I will note that Kawasaki plays as one of the highlights of this season. It was a meaningless game, with four days left in the season and he still ran full speed around the bases on a play that would've ended the inning at least 99 times out of 100. I will give a waiver to Sierra as he is playing on a partially busted ankle.
Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez was very strong against the Blue Jays, giving up just two hits and a walk on five strikeouts--his only run was the unearned one due to Kawasaki's hustle. Between Jose Reyes reaching on a Jonathan Schoop error in the third and J.P. Arencibia's double in the seventh, Gonzalez retired 13-straight Blue Jays
The Blue Jays had a little rally in the eighth inning against Tommy Hunter when Kevin Pillar and Jose Reys led off the inning with singles. With runners on first and second, Kawasaki hit a fly ball into the left-centre field gap, but it hung in the air for long enough, and centre fielder Adam Jones covered enough ground to make the out. Pillar saw that Jones's momentum was taking him away from the infield so he tagged up and advanced, but Reyes didn't and stayed at first. If Reyes had advanced he might have tied the game when Brett Lawrie slapped a liner to right field, scoring Pillar.
In the ninth, Hunter struck out Moises Sierra and Anthony Gose to end the inning. Closer Jim Johnson came out for the ninth and induced a couple of ground outs before Ryan Goins singled right up the middle past the pitcher's mound. However, Johnson ended the game by getting Kevin Pillar to strike out on a curveball way out of the zone.
A positive for the Blue Jays is Chad Jenkins' performance coming in relief of the injured Buehrle. Jenkins threw 42 pitches in 3.2 innings, facing the minimum (the lone hit, a single, was erased by a double play) while striking out four Orioles. Jenkins is determined to make it hard for the Blue Jays to cut him after the season.
Ryan Langerhans was 0-for-4 in his Blue Jays debut.
Jays of the Day! Jose Reyes (+.132 WPA), Chad Jenkins (+.110), Brett Lawrie (+.127)
Suckage Jays: Anthony Gose (-.233), Mark Buehrle (-.159), Moises Sierra (-.147), Ryan Langerhans (-.130). Munenori Kawasaki has the numbers for it (-.137) but I can't give it to him after his hustle play scored the first run of the game.
Three more games left, guys. The Blue Jays are heading home for the last time to face the Tampa Bay Rays. R.A. Dickey will face Jeremy Hellickson at 7:07 pm.