Josh Donaldson is an amazing baseball player. Tonight he had 2 home runs, a double and a single with 5 RBI. Add in a terrific night with the glove and he pretty much won the game all by himself.
His 2-run homer, in the bottom of the 8th, might have been the best moment of the season so far.
Aaron Sanchez pitched better than his line shows. He went 6.2, allowed just 5 hits, 2 walks with 6 strikeouts. A two base error, by Troy Tulowitzki, cost him an unearned run in the second inning. Then, to start the 7th, he gave up a walk and a single. Then he got a little ground ball tapped back to him that almost could have been a double play, but Sanchez didn't try to force it, and took the out at first. That was the smart move.
But the next batter, Christian Vazquez bounced one up the middle that Aaron just missed and 2 more runs score. He should have had it. A strikeout later Aaron was out of the game at 103 pitches. A great night of pitching spoiled by some bad defense and some bad luck.
Joe Biagini came in with 2 out and the tying on base and got a fly out to end the inning.
Unfortunately, in the 8th, Joe fell victim to some bad defense. Dustin Pedroia hit a fly ball to fairly deep left center. Kevin Pillar ran a long way, but veered off because Michael Saunders was pretty much under it. Sadly Saunders decided to leave it for Pillar and it fell for a double. Another fly out (thankfully this one Saunders decided to catch) moved Pedroia to third. And then, with the infield in, Justin Smoak dived at a fairly hard hit Travis Shaw grounder, and had it go off his glove for a single. Devon Travis was set up to make the play until Smoak deflected it. That score the tying run and it looked bad.
Fortunately, Biagini got Hanley Ramirez to ground into a double play. And Donaldson played hero in the bottom of the inning.
Roberto Osuna pitched a very stress free bottom of the 9th for his 11th save of the season.
Like just about every single game this season, we should have scored more. We had 11 hits and 4 walks. Add in Donaldson's 2 home runs and Justin Smoak's (crushed) homer, it's hard to believe we only had 7 runs. Josh drove in 5, Smoak 1 and Edwin Encarnacion had a sac fly that scored the other run.
Troy Tulowitzki had a terrible night. He came up in the 3rd with runners on 1stand3rd and 1 out and he struck out. And in the 4th he came up with the bases loadedand 2-outs, and, you guessed it, he struck out. In the 6th, he got hit by a pitch that looked to be going straight at his head, but he got his shoulder in the way and saved himself a lot of pain. And then he struck out again in the 8th.
0 for 4, 4 strikeouts and the hit batter. Add in a costly error and you have a Suckage award.
I'm giving another suckage award to Michael Saunders, who, in the 4th inning, took a ground single and threw towards 3rd base, with no chance to get the runner, instead of throwing to 2nd and keeping the double play in order. He was lucky that Donaldson made a nice catch, on a low line drive and double the runner off second (see, that was Saunders' plan all along). And then the missed catch on the Pedroia fly ball (putting the tying run at second with no outs). Even with 3 walks, in 5 PA, he earned a Suckage.
Jays of the Day: Donaldson (.599 WPA), Ezequiel Carrera (.100, on a 2 for 4, including the nicest bunt single of the season. Honorable mention to Sanchez, Osuana and Biagini (who allowed the tying run, but really that was on Saunders).
That gives us 3 wins a row. And brings us back to .500.
And Jose Bautista served his suspension, but, since he's on the payroll, he worked as announcer, introducing a Kevin 'he catches everything' Pillar at bat.
We had 1,158 comments in the GameThread. Eric H beat me out for top spot.
|25||Matt Gross (RhodeIslandRoxfan)||10|