There is a little bit of Blue Jays news this morning. Julian Merryweather is getting closer to coming back, perhaps.
Julian Merryweather is on his way back after multiple oblique setbacks.— Scott Mitchell (@ScottyMitchTSN) August 9, 2021
He’s throwing bullpens and progressing towards live ABs.
“This next week’s going to be a big one. If I come out feeling really good, that’s going to be a huge sign that I’m pretty much game ready.”#BlueJays
He’ll be working his way back to a rehab assignment, so there are a number of steps before he’ll be coming out of the Blue Jays pen.
Yesterday’s Umpire Scorecard shows Charlie Ramos was better than we thought, but that call on Marcus Semien was the worst call he made, and overall, mostly because of that call, he helped the Red Sox:
George Springer had the Jays highest WPA of the season (Bo Bichette, back on June 2nd is number two, on a 9th inning triple tying the game against the Marlins) and the sixth-highest of the season in the MLB.
And it is also the 13th best Blue Jays WPA in team history. Jose Bautista holds the top mark (1.062) for a two-home run game (including a 10th inning walk-off homer) against the Rays, on May 2, 2013.
Other top numbers:
- #2: Roberto Alomar: 1.038, May 10, 1991, in a loss to the White Sox.
- #3: Kelly Gruber: 1.019, June 12, 1989, vs. Detroit.
- #4: Paul Molitor: 1.000, May 13, 1993, vs. Detroit.
- #5: Aaron Hill: .969, September 15, 2006, vs. Tampa Bay.
- #6: Munenori Kawasaki: .954, May 26, 2013, vs. Baltimore. You’ll remember the ‘I am Japanese’ interview after. I was at that game.
A lot of things have to go right to make a moment like that. First, you have to be behind going into the bottom of the eighth. Beyond that:
- Breyvic Valera gets a one-out single. Breyvic hasn’t been a favorite of mine, but he’s hitting .318/.348/.409 in his 22 at-bats with the Jays. Maybe it is worthwhile to keep running him out there?
- Santiago Espinal flies out. I expected a pinch hitter here, but if Bo Bichette pinch-hit, he would have had to play defense in the ninth (and perhaps beyond). Maybe he wasn’t up to playing defense. I’m thinking that we’ll find out how injured he is tomorrow. If he isn’t in the lineup for the double-header, if it is worst then they are telling us.
- Reese McGuire worked a walk, in a nine-pitch at-bat. McGuire has walked 6.6% of the time this season. Again I was thinking of a pinch hitter. If it was Bo, he wouldn’t have to play defense, Alejandro Kirk would go in at catcher. But then, if Bo couldn’t hit, I would have been ok with Kirk as pinch-hitter. But as it turned out, I’m happy Charlie choose to keep McGuire in.
- And then, on a two and two-pitch, low in the zone, Springer does this:
I love that he knew as soon as he hit it. I guess when you hit a ball 109.9 MPH you know it is going to go 442 feet. And, it had a 1.000 expected batting average.
And then Jordan Romano did a great job getting the save with a clean ninth, throwing 3 pitches that were over 100 MPH (topping at 101.4).
You’ve likely seen this, but in MLB.com’s ‘power ranking’ the Jays dropped from 11th to 14th spot. How do you win five straight and drop 3 spots? Well, because the rankings are voted on. There are no numbers involved. But how can they vote that the Jays aren’t in the top ten at worst?
I’m hoping we can retire the term ‘much win game’ until at least September? If there is a real must-win game in early August, your team isn’t making the playoffs.
I wish I spoke French, this sounds much more fun than Buck and Pat: