Fourth win in a row. Baseball is so much more fun now, not that it wouldn't have been better to start this little streak a month ago. Still, wins are better than losses any day. And I'm so happy to have a series win in that awful dome.
The offense does appear to have returned. Something else to be happy about.
We had 12 hits, including 2 home runs. Dioner Navarro hits one for the second night in a row, a 2-run shot and Edwin Encarnacion hit his 29th of the season, another 2-run job, but that one had to be reviewed, mostly because Joe Maddon didn't want to ever go home again. He must be fighting with his wife, he tried to make this last forever.
Adam Lind went 4 for 4, including a double. Joses Reyes and Bautista had 2 hits each, Reyes hitting his fourth triple of the season. Navarro also had 2 hits and 2 walks, one of them intentional. Maddon figured he could slow the game down more if he walked Dioner to load the bases. Danny Valencia almost made him really pay, coming few feet short of a grand slam, settling for a sac fly.
The only starters not to hit were Melky Cabrera (0 for 4 with an sac fly RBI), Valencia (0 for 2, with 2 sac fly RBI) and Goins (0 for 4).Goins also had a ground ball go under his glove, (though it was a tough play) so not a great day for the guy.
Marcus Stroman was great. He went 6 innings, allowed 7 hits, 2 earned, 1 walk and struck out. He also overcame some gamesmenship by Maddon, who decided that, since Marcus was having a very easy time of it, the game had to be delayed. With 1 out in the third and Marcus having allowed just 1 hit, Maddon complained to umpires that because a handful of lights lights were out, the game should be halted. It was plenty bright in Tropicana Field, you could still see how ugly it was, but there was a 30 minute delay while workers tried to find the light switch. When the game started again, Marcus' first pitch when for strike three on Jose Molina. The delay seemed to cause Maddon's starter Chris Archer more trouble than it did Stroman.
The delay did lead to Stroman leaving the game early. Gibby pulled him after 76 pitches, after he had a pretty tough 6th inning. I'm all for watching his inning count anyway.
Aaron Loup, Dustin McGowan and Aaron Sanchez pitched an inning each to finish off the game. Loup and Sanchez were very good (Aaron picked up his second save). McGowan wasn't good, giving up 2 hits, including a 2-run homer. He's been pretty lousy for awhile now.
We did have some good defense, most notably from Jose Bautista in right field, who made 3 very good catches. He really did seem to want to make sure we won.
And we had 3 stolen bases, 2 from Reyes, who took second and third after his single in the 3rd and 1 from Anthony Gose. Gose, who, it seems, has inherited the center field job, had a pretty good game, making the catches in the outfield and getting a hit.
The game time was 3:09 with darkness delay and reviews. It seemed longer.
Jays of the Day are Stroman (.182 WPA) and Navarro (.246), and I'm going to give one to Lind for his 4 for 5 game.
No Suckage Jays.
There was one heck of a thunder storm hitting the St. Pete area during the game. There is a great GIF of Melky getting scared by a particularly loud clap of thunder. If you haven't see it yet, go take a look at in on our Bluebird Banter Facebook page (yes that was a free plug for our Facebook page, which you should be following).
We had 1226 comments in our GameThreads. Spor pulling out the win, despite my 9th inning ummmm stuffing of the ballot box. Great job.