Orioles 6 Blue Jays 5
Not a good night for Yusei Kikuchi.
4 innings, plus a batter, 5 hits, 4 earned, 4 walks, 4 strikeouts, 2 home runs. One of the runs wasn’t really earned. In the fourth, with two out and a runner on first, Robinson Chirinos popped a fly ball down the left-field line. Unfortunately, Lourdes Gurriel was shifted way over into the gap, and the ball fell out of his and Bo Bichette’s, reach. Shifts are successful a bunch, but not this time.
The other runs against, he earned. Walk and a home run in the third. And a solo homer to start the fifth.
There was an interesting play in the sixth inning. Trevor Richards, who gave up a run in the fifth, had a runner on second (Jorge Mateo) and one out. He got Richie Martin to strike out on a pitch that bounced. Mateo was stealing third. Gabriel Moreno threw late, and Mateo was safe. Unfortunately, batters need to be ‘put out’ on a ball in the dirt, and he wasn’t, so instead of having the second out and a runner on third, we had one out and runners on the corners. A single scored Mateo.
I don’t know that I’ve seen that before. Likely have, but I can understand Moreno making the mistake. He might go his whole career without that happening again.
Thankfully, Trent Thornton came in and got a double play to end the inning. Thornton was terrific. He went 2.2 innings, allowing just 1 baserunner, giving the team a chance to get back into the game.
Tim Mayza got the top of the ninth. He got a fly ball down the right-field line that Hernandez got his glove on, but dropped. Likely Vlad, running hard from the infield, distracted him. It would have distracted me. It didn’t cost us. Tim went 3 up 3 down.
On offense, well, we missed a good opportunity.
In the third, we had the bases loaded with one out. Bo Bichette scored one with a groundout. Vladimir Guerrero was hit in the hand with a pitch, loading the bases again. I hate seeing guys hit in the hand, but he seemed ok. I wouldn’t be surprised if he sits tomorrow because I’m sure the hand will be sore. They tell us that he had an x-ray and all is good.
Then Teoscar Hernandez hit a ball into the fifth deck. Unfortunately, about 20 feet foul. He crushed it but was a tiny bit too quick on the swing. A bit slower, and it would have been a different game. Such is life.
We did get a couple of runs in the fourth on a Matt Chapman home run. And one more in the sixth, Moreno got his first MLB RBI, singling home Gurriel.
We had another chance in the seventh. With two outs, we got back-to-back singles from Vlad and Teoscar, but Lourdes chased for a strikeout.
The Jays made it a one-run game in the eighth. Santiago Espinal, pinch-hitting, started us off with a double. After a Chapman fly ball to the track in center, Moreno followed with a single. Moreno came out, and Brad Zimmer pinch ran. But Alejandro Kirk, also pinch-hitting, ground into a force at second. A wild pitch moved Kirk to second (we could have used Zimmer in that spot). George Springer hit a soft liner caught at first base. A little higher, or a little to the left or right and we would have had a tie game.
We had Bo, Vlad and Teoscar up in the bottom of the ninth. Bo hit a soft grounder to short, great play by Mateo, barehanded, to get him. Bo slid/dove into first. I don’t think he would have been safe anyway but I wish they wouldn’t do that. Vlad was almost hit in the head by a pitch and then ground out. Vlad was hit in the hand, very nearly hit in the arm and almost hit in the head. I don’t understand people that play baseball. I could stand in after that. Teoscar struck out. And that was the game.
We had 10 hits, including Chapman’s home run. We should have scored more. The team was 3 for 11 with RISP. If we went 4 for 11, i might have been a different game.
Moreno was 3 for 4, 2 RBI and threw out a base stealer (he was 1 for 3 against base stealers. Chapman was 2 for 4, with 2 RBI.
On the flip side, Springer, Bichette and Biggio had 0 fors.
Jays of the Day: Moreno (.258 WPA), Chapman (.134), Espinal (.107, all on the pinch-hit double) and Thornton (.106).
Suckage: Kikuchi (-.281), Richards (-.175), Hernandez (-.156), Bichette (.152), Springer (.149) and Biggio (-.122).
Tomorrow we have game 3 of the series. Jose Berrios (5-2, 4.73) vs. Bruce Zimmerman (2-5, 5.52). John Lennon said he didn’t believe in Zimmerman, so we should win this one.