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Mitch White has a Bad Day, Jays Lose

Chicago Cubs v Toronto Blue Jays
The headless man is Lourdes Gurriel, trying and failing to get out of the way of an inside pitch
Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images

Cubs 7 Blue Jays 5

Mitch White had a very rough night.

He went 4.2, and allowed 8 hits, 5 of them extra-base hits, 1 walk with 5 strikeouts. He seemed to be getting a fair bit of swing and miss, but when the Cubs made contact, they hit the ball hard.

I don’t know. He was throwing hard enough. He had good movement on the pitches. But, the balls seemed to rocket off the Cubs bats. And unfortunately, their hard-hit balls also seemed to avoid our fielder’s gloves.

Our bullpen did a very good job. 1 earned in 4.1 innings. We used four relievers, the only one to all baserunners was David Phelps, who gave up a couple of hits and a run.

Tim Mayza looked particularly good, which is nice to see because he hasn’t been good since returning from the IL.

On offence, we got five runs, so can’t complain too much. We had 7 hits, but 2 of them were home runs.

Cavan Biggio hit his 4th of the season, a 2-run shot. It was his first since August 8th. Nice to see since he’s only hit .216 this month.

And Alejandro Kirk had a 3-run homer. His first since July 26th. Very nice to see because he hasn’t been hitting the ball hard lately.

Kirk's home run made it a 1-run game for a few minutes.

There were a couple of bad defensive moments.

  • Whit Merrifield had a hard-hit ball go through him. I thought he should have at least knocked it down. He could have saved us a run by keeping it from going past him.
  • Kirk had a bad moment too. In the second inning, with runners on first and third and two out, the runner on first (Alfonso Rivas) started off to second. When Kirk threw to second he slowed, and the runner on third (Yan Gomes) came home. Kirk should have looked Gomes back to third or held on to the ball. It cost us a run in what turned out to be a close game.

And Plate Umpire Nick Mahrley’s strike zone was less “by the rules” and more an art form. He called a lot of pitches off the plate and high (or low) strikes. I’ll be curious to see the Umpire Scorecard tomorrow. I don’t think he favoured either team. but since we were behind, it seemed to hurt us more than the Cubs.

Jay of the Day? The only Jay to have the number was Kirk (.139), but that mistake on the double steal cost us. Let’s give him an honourable mention, since he drove in three and cost us one. And it also cost us TV viewers a 10-minute rant from “In My Day” Buck Martinez.

The Other Award? White (-.321 WPA), Phelps (-.115), and Springer (-.125, 0 for 5, including a pop-out to end the game, when he was the tying run at the plate).

Tomorrow is an off day. I should have looked ahead. I planned to go to the bar to watch a game that isn’t going to happen. Then we have three games in Pittsburgh.