Guardians 7 Blue Jays 2
That was frustrating.
Bad hitting (and, when we hit the ball hard, it found a glove) and bad fielding. It seemed like a game we just didn’t deserve to win.
The bats started well. Lourdes Gurriel started the game off with a hard hit single to right. Vladimir Guerrero flew out to right, but Alejandro Kirk singled to right. A Teoscar Hernandez double to right scored a run. It seemed like a theme. Everyone was taking Shane Bieber to right (he was throwing to the outside and off the outside of the plate). But Matt Chapman struck out, and Ramiel Tapia ground out to end the fun.
Bieber seemed to change things up after that, and the Jays didn’t get another hit until the fourth inning and didn’t score again until the fifth.
We had chances. In the fifth, after the run scored, Gurriel was on second with one out. But Vlad ground out and Kirk line one that Myles Straw made a great catch on (Baseball Savant had that at a .570 xba).
And in the seventh, we had the tying run at the plate, and that tying run was Vlad, but he ground out.
In all, we had 8 hits, but just the 2 runs. Lourdes had a very good day at the plate, with three hits. He was the only Jay with more than one hit.
Guerrero, Chapman and Biggio had 0 fors.
And, though there was only one official error, it was one of those days where no on seemed to be able to make a play.
Kirk made the error, throwing wide of second on a steal attempt. He was having a rough time throwing to second, though he had one caught stealing (only because Ramirez overslid second base). The Guardians stole three.
- Biggio had a couple of adventures in right, turning catchable balls into hits (he also made a very nice catch in foul territory, sliding into the wall). Kirk also had a costly ‘wild pitch’ (I’d have called it a passed ball, but it is silly to have the distinction).
- Tapia had a high popup fall in front of him and then bounce over his head.
- Merrifield had a couple of misplays, diving for a ball and missing, having it bounce off him and getting far enough away to cost a base. And he was slow on a feed to Espinal at short, costing us a double play.
- Vlad made a nice grab on a ground ball but dropped it trying to take it out of his glove to throw to Gausman.
It just seemed like one of those days.
After being AL Player of the Week, Kevin Gausman wasn’t great. He went 4.2, allowing 9 hits, 5 earned, 1 walk and 5 strikeouts. With some help from the gloves, it would have looked much better, but I said, early in the game, that he wouldn’t be player of the week again.
We got good work from David Phelps (1.1 innings), Trevor Richards (1) and Anthony Bass (1).
Trent Thornton gave up 3 hits and 2 runs in the top of the ninth to put the game well out of reach.
Jay of the Day is Gurriel (.110 WPA).
Suckage: Gausman had the number (-.267), not truly all his fault, but he wasn’t great. Vlad (-.130, 0 for 4, 1 RBI, and he could have helped us out. He came up with runners on base a few times) and Chapman (0 for 4, 3 k). Chapman hit .325/.396/.699 in July but is just at .177/.282/.441 in August. Kirk, Merrifield, Biggio and Tapia deserve the honour for their glovework.
Tomorrow we start 3 against the Orioles. Yushi Kikuchi (4-6, 5.13) goes against Kyle Bradish (1-4, 6.42). He’s not Brad. He’s just Bradish. That a game that promises a lot of runs scored. Hopefully, the Jays will bring their bats (and gloves).
Just to make you feel better, here is a picture of a polar bear about to jump into Hudson’s Bay. We had a nice holiday up there. Unfortunately, couldn’t get Jays games on TV, and WiFi was pretty terrible in our hotel. But we saw a lot of bears and beluga whales.