We needed that. Or maybe, I needed that. When you start questioning a life long love affair with baseball, a win is a needed thing.
We needed and got a great start from Marcus Stroman. 7 innings, 2 runs, 1 earned, 1 walk and 6 strikeouts. The best part was the 14 ground outs with just 2 fly outs. He gave up the 2 runs in the 6th but they weren't really his fault. Juan Francisco missed a pretty easy ground ball. A clean to center and another single right past Francisco (a couple of feet closer and it would have been a double play ball) loaded the bases. David Ortiz singled one home. Then Dioner Navarro whiffed on a pitch that bounce just to his right, I thought it should have been a passed ball, but it was called a wild pitch. I really hate that this is a judgement call for the scorer, just call them both the same thing and share responsibility between the pitcher and catcher. Marcus righted the ship, getting a ground ball hit back to him and then getting Daniel Nava to strikeout.
Brett Cecil pitched got the last 4 outs, 3 of them by strikeout. Boy he was good.
And we actually scored some runs for a change. Jose Bautista hit a home run in the first, giving him homers on back-to-back games. It would be nice to see him get hot again. And we scored 4 more in the 7th. The big shot was a pinch-hit. 3-run homer by Danny Valencia. Gibby brought him in to hit for Francisco, with lefty Tommy Lane pitching for the Sox, but John Farrell countered with Junichi Tazawa, who served one up to Valencia. So nice to have a big home run when we needed one. Kevin Pillar followed by legging out a double, great hustle. Munenori moved him up to third with a bunt. I wasn't thrilled with the move but it worked out. Pillar scored (making a great slide into home) on a ground ball to short by Jose Reyes.
It was so good to score some runs for a change. We only had 6 hits. 2 for Bautista and 1 each for Edwin Encarnacion, Navarro, Valencia and Pillar.
Jays of the Day are Stroman (.126 WPA), Valencia (.258), Edwin (.139 and i'm giving one to Bautista too. I'm also hoping that the slide into the right field wall didn't cause an injury. He was limping around after it. I thought they should have taken him out of the game. And I'm giving one to Cecil because we haven't had a nice clean save in a while.
No Suckage Jays, for a change.
We had a really nice GameThread, 690 comments. Spor led the way. Great job man.