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Extra inning loss for the Jays

Seattle Mariners v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Joshua Bessex/Getty Images

Mariners 9 Blue Jays 7

It seems like we are terrible at extra innings.

In the top of the tenth, with the Manfred Man on second and Patrick Murphy in the game, the M’s got:

  • A hard hit lineout, by Jake Bauers.
  • A ground ball single between Bo and Cavan, to put runners on the corners, by Shed Long Jr.
  • Dylan Moore homered to put the M’s up by three.

That was it for Murphy, Tayler Saucedo took over and got three quick outs. The saying ‘closing the barn door after the horse has bolted’ comes to mind. I had, still have, high hopes for Murphy, but he didn’t look good tonight.

In the bottom of the winning, with Randal Grichuk on second:

  • Drew Steckenrider (if he was born 80 years earlier, he would have had to be a comedian) gave up a double by Cavan Biggio, bringing in Randal and bringing the tying run to the plate.
  • Lourdes Gurriel, who homered to tie the game in the eighth, struck out, not wanting to hog the hero role.
  • Reese McGuire hit a medium fly ball to left.
  • Marcus Semien (moments after a phone notification told me the Jays lost), popped up.

The game was broadcast on YouTube TV and calling it a mistake feels generous. The overloaded booth spent a lot of the night talking as fast as they could, spent more than a typical broadcast does deriding the game, and lost track of where they were on occasion. The game was exceptionally long on its own, but the poor broadcast somehow made it worse.

However, it wasn’t all bad. The advanced metrics were nice to see, even if the announcers didn’t really understand them. The caffeine seemed to wear off as the game went on, and the announcers finally let the game breathe. The team-related content between innings was a lot more interesting than the same commercials over and over. And they probably got some eyes on the game they normally don’t, although it came at the expense of making the game inaccessible to many other fans.

The offense was simultaneously good and bad. A lot of baserunners, but a lot of stranded base runners. The team was 4-16 with runners in scoring position, stranding 9 guys on base.

The first inning started off great, with a leadoff walk by Semien, followed by a single by Bichette which Semien aggressively took third base on. Runners on the corner with none out is a great start for Vladdy to come up, but he struck out, and then Teo lined into a double play to end the inning.

The Jays loaded the bases with none out in the second inning but scored just 1 on a sac fly by Gurriel.

The third inning went better, with the first two batters getting on base again. But this time, after a Teo strikeout, a Springer flyout with another aggressive baserunning decision by Bichette, this one a bit closer (but safe after review). But when the Jays were once again looking at a failed inning, Grichuk hit a double that scored Bo, and Vladdy scored behind him thanks to a Crawford error, and a great slide just ahead of the tag at home. But Biggio grounded out to strand Grichuk at second base.

Semien had a 1 out double in the fourth, went to third on a Bichette groundout, but was stranded at third base after Vladdy’s second strikeout of the night.

Springer had a 1 out double in the fifth, and after a flyout from Grichuk, he moved to third base on a Biggio single, and scored on a Gurriel single. After Adams walked to load the bases, Semien struck out to once again end the threat.

The Jays went down in order in the sixth and seventh innings, the first time they didn’t get a runner on base, and as such didn’t strand runners.

Gurriel led off the 8th inning with an absolute bomb to tie the game at 6 on the first pitch. Adams flew out to LF, but Semien took the walk. Bichette took his place with a fielder’s choice, went to second base on a passed ball, but was stranded when Vladdy grounded out.

Springer took a one-out walk in the ninth inning, and Grichuk took his spot at first base with a fielder’s choice. Grichuk attempted to steal second and was initially safe on the call, but a review called him out and sent us to extra innings.

On the pitching and defense side, the Jays struggled.

Matz had a clean first couple innings, allowing just a single while throwing only 23 pitches.

The wheels fell off for Matz in the third inning. He allowed a single and double to open things, then Biggio threw away a bunt single. A pair of strikeouts later, and it looked like Matz was getting back on track, but then Kyle Seager hit an opposite-field wall scraping home run, and that was the end of Matz’ night.

Matz’ final line was 4 runs on 5 hits, 3 strikeouts and no walks over 2.2 innings. For his first start coming back from COVID, he looked sharp before faltering late. He threw just 48 pitches, but with 25 in the third inning, I’m sure he was at his exertion limit.

Thornton came on to finish the third inning, and worked around a single, stolen base and throwing error to strand a runner at third base in the fourth inning. However, Thornton came back out for the fifth after the Jays had tied it back up at 4, and he probably shouldn’t have. Starting off the inning, he gave up a double to Crawford then a home run to Haniger. The home run didn’t knock him out though, as he was allowed to surrender a single and then that was the end of his night.

Thornton’s final line was 1.1 innings, 2 runs on 4 hits. He struck out 2 and didn’t walk a batter. If he didn’t come back out for the fifth, his night would have looked a lot better.

Kay came in with a runner on first base and none out. He gave up a single to the first batter, moved the two runners to second and third with a wild pitch, but then struck out the next three batters to keep the game tight.

Kay threw a perfect sixth inning and seventh inning, collecting three more strikeouts there as well. He also got the eighth inning, and he worked around a walk, plus a botched double play by Bichette, getting zero outs instead of the two. But a pair of pop-ups ended the inning and a great outing for Kay.

Kay’s line for the night was 4 innings, 1 hit, and 1 walk, with 5 strikeouts. He was great, and let the Jays claw their way back into it.

Romano came out for the ninth in a tie game, since the Jays were at home and there was no longer going to be a save opportunity. After a leadoff single and a walk, Romano turned things around with a short fly ball to right field, a strikeout, and a soft groundout.

The bullpen is going to get (and deserve) a lot of grief, but there were 14 Jays base runners in the first five innings, they should have scored more. One more run would have saved us the terrible tenth inning.

Jays of the Day: Kay (.248 WPA), Romano (.147), Gurriel (.285) and Biggio (.135)

Suckage Jays: Murphy (-.289), Matz (-.266), Thornton (-.210), Hernandez (-.284), Grichuk (-.161) and Guerrero (-.152).

I know Vlad doesn't want a game off, but maybe he could use a mental health day. Of course, saying that, he’ll likely hit 3 home runs tomorrow.

Tomorrow’s Canada Day game is a 1:00 Eastern start.

We had 990 comments in the GameThread. delv213 led the way to the crushing defeat.

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