Now that's the game we have been waiting to see. No sweating. No begging the offense to get a run. No extra innings. We didn't even have to rely on the other team's manager to be stupid to win.
First let's salute Marco Estrada. He was terrific. 8.1 innings, Just 4 hits (3 singles and a triple), no walks and 6 strikeouts. Gibby let him start the 9th looking for the shutout, but he gave up a leadoff triple to Andrus, who would score on a ground out. Gibby decided to pull him there, which was the smart move. Ryan Tepera got the last two outs.
Marco had one bad moment on defense. A ball was hit to his left, Edwin went a long way to his right to field it (he didn't have to, Devon was there) but Marco didn't cover first. Pitchers are told to, at least, start towards first on anything to their left, but Marco likely figured Devon would field it.
Our offense was just as good as our pitching.
We scored 7 runs off Cole Hamels in 3.1 innings. In fairness to him, his defense was just terrible, but he wasn't much better.
We scored 5 runs in the 3rd inning:
Ezequiel Carerra worked a 1-out walk, then all the scoring happened after 2 outs. Josh Donaldson doubled off Adrian Beltre's glove, it was 108 mph off the bat, so a very tough play, it went right through him (the play at second was very close, the Rangers challenged the call, but it was too close to overturn), sending Ezequiel home. Edwin Encarnacion singled, off Cole Hamels' glove, if he let it go I think it would have been an easy ground out. Jose Bautista singled to center, scoring Josh. Russell Martin walked.
And then the big hit, Troy Tulowitzki flied deep to center field, a ball that Rangers center fielder could have caught, but he pulled up at the last second, I'm guessing afraid of running into the wall. That scored 3 and that pretty much ended any doubt that we'd win.
We got 2 runs in the 4th inning:
Melvin Upton hit a leadoff homer. An out later, Devon Travis reached on an Elvis Andrus error (Grant Brisbee tweeted that Elvis has the 4th highest playoff WAR for any Blue Jay). A passed ball moved Travis to second and he scored on a Donaldson single.
And we got 3 more runs in the 9th:
Jose Bautista hit a 3-run bomb, scoring Donaldson and Encarnacion. I'm so happy for Jose.
We had 13 hits and 6 walks. When was the last time we had 13 hits? Just about everyone had a great day. Donaldson had 4 hits, with 2 doubles and 2 RBI. Troy Tulowitzki had 3 hits, with a triple and 3 RBI. Encarnacion and Bautista had 2 hits each, Jose had 4 RBI. Carerra reached base 3 times, a single and 2 walks.
Jays to go 0 for were Travis (0 for 5), Martin (0 for 4, but with a walk) and Pillar (0 for 5).
Jays of the Day: Estrada (.184 WPA), Tulo (.157) and Donaldson (.154). I'm also giving one to Jose. I love that the Rangers fans booed him. That was a great way to get him going.
No suckage Jays.
We had some super defense. Tulo made some great plays. We got a strikeout/throw out, when we were up by 7. Great throw from Martin, lousy baseball by the Rangers. Pillar made a couple of great catches.
The Rangers defense was terrible again, just like the last time we played them in a playoff game
Game 2 is tomorrow at 1:00 Eastern. Taking both games in Texas would be great.
We had 2004 comments in the GameThread. Not bad, considering it was a weekday day game and it was fairly quick. spookster led us to victory.
|27||red hot blues||19|
|32||Pillar for President||14|
|37||Matt Gross (RhodeIslandRoxfan)||10|