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Smoak homers, Jays Win

We got a nice start from Aaron Sanchez.

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Toronto Blue Jays John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Tigers 0 Blue Jays 3

That was a nice game to watch. Aaron Sanchez was very good. Maybe not as efficient as we would have liked, but 5 scoreless innings is pretty good. In all 5.0 plus a batter, 3 hit (all singles), 3 walks (he didn’t get much called at the top of the zone) and 6 strikeouts. He was at 87 pitches after 5 innings, I thought he would be pulled, but it started the 6th inning and hit Miguel Cabrera in the arm and that was the end of his day. Cabrera left the game, they tell us that x-rays were negative which is positive apparently.

Aaron was hitting 97 on the radar and threw some very nice curves. He looks healthy. It is good to see him throwing so well.

On offense, we didn’t do a lot. We didn’t get our first baserunner until Brandon Drury doubled to lead off the fourth inning. Billy McKinney followed with a single, giving us our first run. McKinney was thrown out trying to stretch it to a single, a bad idea. I think he expected the throw to go home. Drury had to wait to make sure the ball wasn’t caught, it might have been close at the plate, but the ball was bobbled a bit in the outfield.

After that Teoscar Hernandez walked (he had two walks today, nice to see) and Justin Smoak homered to the opposite field. That would be all the runs we’d get on the day. We had other chances:

  • Freddy Galvis doubled to start the 7th inning. Richard Urena put down a very nice bunt to move Freddy to third. I’m not a fan of the bunt with a runner on second, he’s in scoring position, and you have 3 outs to get him home. But Urena put down a perfect bunt and I appreciate the art of a great bunt. Unfortunately, Drury grounded hard to third and Galvis was out after a rundown. McKinney popped out to end the inning.
  • And we loaded the bases in the eighth. Henandez walked, Jansen singled and Grichuk was hit by pitch, to load them up with 1 out. But Kevin Pillar struck out (he had a bad day at the plate) and Galvis hit the fly ball to fairly deep center that Pillar needed, but instead of a sac fly it was the third out.

We got good work from the bullpen too.

  • Tim Mayza got 2 outs, then gave up a walk.
  • Daniel Hudson came in with 2 out and 2 out and got out last of the inning. He came out for the 7, got 2 outs and gave up a single and he came out. I thought it was good of Montoyo to a) get him into a game soon after he lost the first game of the season and good to take him out with the first baserunner, so he could leave with the outing being a success.
  • Joe Biagini came in and struck out Nicholas Castellanos to end the inning. He had a quick 8th, getting another strikeout.
  • Ken Giles got his first save of the season, giving up a single but getting 2 strikeouts in the ninth.

The other moment of note, Danny Jansen jumped on a ball that got away from him quickly and threw out the runner trying to go for third base. He is showing a very good arm.

Jays are 2-1. They play the final game of the series with the Tigers tomorrow, a 1:00 start. Four game series, four different start times. They like to keep us guessing.

Jays of the Day: Sanchez (.222 WPA) and Smoak (.147).

Suckage: No one. Pillar had the low mark at -.054 and if we had lost I’d have given him one, but we won, so life is good.

We had 766 comments in the GameThread. DangYouToHeck led us to victory.

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