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Good start from Cesar Valdez: Jays beat A’s

Oakland Athletics v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

A’s 1 Blue Jays 4

Who had Cesar Valdez pitching 6 innings of 1-run ball?

Cesar looked very good. He was throwing strikes, just 1 walk, with 4 strikeouts and he scattered 5 hits.

I do get the feeling that he might have more trouble after teams get to scout him a bit more, but maybe he’ll adjust too.

Cesar allowed a double, to start off the 7th and Gibby came out and got him. He was at 77 pitches, but I’d imagine it has been a bit since he’s thrown more than that, and it allowed the Rogers Centre crowd to give him a hand.

The most interesting play was a hard line drive hit back at him, he kind of took it off his forearms but corralled it and made the play at first base.

Joe Smith, of the firm of Smith, Smith, Smith and Smith, came into the 7th with the runner on second and got out of the inning without him moving. Jose Bautista helped him out with a very nice catch in left right.

Ryan Tepera gave up a walk in the 8th but no runs.

Roberto Osuna had a scoreless 9th, helped out by a terrific play by Josh on a ball down the line, diving grab and perfect throw. Save 26 for Roberto.

Offensively, we did enough. Just 6 hits, but we had a 4-run second inning.

The second went:

  • Justin Smoak single.
  • Kendrys Morales tapped one towards first, pitcher Sonny Gray grabbed in and spun to throw to second, or as it turned out, well above second. Smoak to third on the error.
  • A Troy Tulowitzki ground out scored Smoak.
  • Ezequiel Carrera (who made two throws to the right base tonight!) singled, giving us runners on the corners. Wild pitch moved Ezequiel to second.
  • After a Kevin Pillar strike out (chasing a pitch low and about a foot outside), Ryan Goins doubled in the runners.
  • And Bautista hit a ground rule double to right to finish the scoring. Home run haters will be happy we scored 4 without a homer.

I have to comment on the bottom of the 8th inning:

Morales was hit by pitch and Tulo singled (his second hit of the game, small victories). Runners on first and second, no outs. It looked like we had an insurance run or two coming.

But Jays had Ezequiel bunt and the A’s got the lead runner (up three, playing for one run is dumb, especially with one of the few guys who is hitting well at the plate). Then Kevin Pillar hit a soft fly to right, Matt Joyce had a long run to make the catch, but it wasn’t a tough catch. For unknown reasons Tulo had taken off from second and was doubled off easy. That’s 2 brain dead base running errors on Tulo in less than a week.

I should mention that Josh had a long long at bat, 12 pitches, in the 7th inning (against former Jay Liam Hendricks). Strike 3 was a borderline call (Jays strike zone called it a 36% call), so Josh wasn’t happy. But then, the 2-2 pitch looked like a strike (Josh swore loudly and took a step towards the dugout, before realizing he wasn’t rung up).

Jays of the Day: Valdez (.159 WPA), Goins (.137, for 1 for 3 with 2 RBI) and Joe Smith (.107).

Suckage: Pillar (-.095 for an 0 for 4, 1 k). I’d give Tulo one, just for the stupid move but he was the one Jay with two hits tonight.

We had 572 comments in the GameThread. Belisarius just beat me out for top spot (banking on me ducking out of the thread to do the recap). Great job.

# Commenter # Comments
1 Belisarius 71
2 Tom Dakers 69
3 TimmyMax 65
4 Alan F. 48
5 DangYouToHeck 47
6 FlipDown Shades 39
7 Matt W 36
8 kateincali 33
9 spockster 27
10 delv213 23
11 MartsB 22
12 MidnightOverlord 21
13 fishedin 21
14 lalalaprise 14
15 Pillar for President 11