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Today in Jays History: Jays win in 19 innings

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Detroit Tigers v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

6 Years ago today

The Jays and Tigers played for 19 innings. The game was 6 hours and 37 minutes long. A record in innings and time. We would lose a 19 inning game in 2016.

The final was Tigers 5 Blue Jays 6

In the 19th inning:

  • Munenori Kawasaki led off with a single. He had been 0 for 5 with a walk, before this at bat. He came into the game in the bottom of the seventh, pinch hitting for Ryan Goins. Rick Porcello was pitching in his second inning.
  • Jose Reyes bunted. Tigers pitcher Rick Porcello threw wide to second base and we had runners on first and third.
  • The Tigers intentionally walked Melky Cabrera to load the bases. Walking the bases loaded to face Jose Bautista is one of those moves that I really don’t understand. I know the thought process is to give a force out at the plate, but it also makes a walk a game winner. Bautista had a .411 OBP at the time. Personally, I’d think pitch to Melky, if that works, walk Jose to face Juan Francisco with the bases loaded.
  • Bautista hit a deep fly, not a home run but deep enough to score the runner, and with the outfield shallow, the Tigers didn’t try to catch it. ruled a single. Jays win 6-5. You might remember that, while Bautista was being interviewed post game, R.A. Dickey came by and gave him a kiss.

Before that?

Mark Buehrle started and wasn’t good. He went 3.1, allowed 9 hits, 5 runs, 2 earned, no walks and 4 strikeouts. He was hurt by a Reyes error in the first.

After Buehrle came out of the game we had 15.2 innings of shutout ball from out bullpen. We used 7 relievers:

  • Todd Redmond: 2.2, 1 hit, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts.
  • Aaron Sanchez 3 innings, 1 hit, 3 strikeouts.
  • Brett Cecil 1.1, 2 hits, 3 strikeouts.
  • Dustin McGowan 1.1, 1 hit, 1 walk, 1 strikeout.
  • Aaron Loup: 0.1.
  • Casey Janssen: 1 inning, 1 hit, 1 walk.
  • Chad Jenkins: 6 innings, 7 hits, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts. He pitched into and out of trouble trouble in most of his 6 innings. He only had 1 clean inning, but it worked.

On the list of heroes of the game, Jenkins has to be near the top. Jenkins would only pitch in 3 more games for the Blue Jays. One of then 4 days later and 2 next season and that was the end of his career.

I had complaints about the way the bullpen was use. When you are in late innings of a close (in this case tied) game, you might want to have guys pitch more than an inning. When Jenkins came in, he was the end of the bullpen (though I’d imagine if Chad’s arm fell right off Dickey would have been asked to pitch. Charlie’s been doing similar stuff. Sometimes it feels like managers forget that games can go more then 9 innings.

On offense, we were down 3-0 after the first, and then 5-0 after the fourth. We scored:

  • 2 in the sixth: With 2 outs, Danny Valencia doubled and Dioner Navarro homered.
  • 2 in the seventh: Steven Tolleson (remember him?) walked. Colby Rasmus singled. That was the end of the day for David Price. He went 6 innings, allowed 5 hits, 4 earned, 3 walks and 6 strikeouts. An out later, with Phil Coke in, Reyes singled home Tolleson and Cabrera singled home Rasmus. That was it for Coke, the unusually named, Al Alburquerque came in and finished the inning and pitched the next.
  • 1 in the ninth: Joba Chamberlain came in for the inning. Anthony Gose led off with a single. Gose was pinch-hitting for Tolleson, he would go 2 for 6, on the day after coming into the game in the ninth inning. Rasmus struck out, Gose went for second on the 2 strike pitch and, originally was called out, but it was overturned on replay. That saved the game. After a Kawasaki lined out, Reyes singled home Gose. Tied game. It would stay tied for 9.5 more innings. It was Anthony Gose’s birthday (still is, he turns 30 today).

We had 17 hits (8 after the ninth inning (Tigers had 22 hits, 11 after the ninth inning). Reyes was 4 for 9. Cabrera 3 for 5 with 5 walks (43 walks that year and 5 were in this game, including 2 intentional walks). Valencia, Navarro, Gose and Rasmus had 2 walks each. The biggest 0 for was an 0 for 7 for Nolan Reimold (with 2 walks).

Want to talk old school managing? The Tigers handed out 5 intentional walks. Two for Melky and Bautista. One for Rasmus.

We intentionally walked Victor Martinez twice.

From the recap (if you want an inning by inning recap of the extra innings, it is in there):

Jays of the Day are: McGowan (.226), Janssen (.143), Sanchez (.120), Loup (.117). Super JotD are: Reyes (.606), Melky (.457). Finally, Chad Jenkins had a .861 WPA(!), good for the team’s first Ultra Jay of the Day (> .800 WPA) since Bautista and Kawasaki did it 4 days apart in May 2013 (which really makes it seem a much more common occurrence than it is).

Suckage: Buehrle (-.287), Francisco (-.512), Thole (-.342), Reimold (-.296), Kawasaki (-.367). Bautista had the number too (-.328) but I can’t give him one.

The FanGraph was a thing of beauty: