This was an entertaining game. Neither starter was quite sharp, but Jose Berrios was able to hold it together and Kyle Bradish wasn’t. The teams combined for 18 hits but no home runs. Uncharacteristically, the Jays mostly took advantage of their opportunities to cash in runners, while the Orioles didn’t.
The Jay’s defence was notable very good today.. Espinal and Bichette especially made some very nice plays in support of their pitchers.
Jose Berrios walked the tightrope today. He was mostly hitting his spots, but the Orioles didn’t seem to be fooled much. The first inning was uneventful, with just an Adley Rutschman single that was erased by an Anthony Santander double play ball. He lead off the second by hitting Ryan Mountcastle (who would leave the game with an elbow injury), and added a Teran Vavra double and a Ramon Urias walk to load the bases, but escaped the jam with a strikeout of Kyle Stowers.
The Oriole’s runs off him came in the third. Cederic Mullins lead off with a ground ball single, Anthony Santander doubled down the left field line to move Mullins to third, and Jesus Aguillar (hitting for Mountcastle) reached on a Danny Jansen catcher’s interference to load the bases. Gunnar Henderson cashed in two runs with a ground ball single, making it 3-2 Toronto.
Things almost got evened up in the fourth. Mullins reached on a fielder’s choice and moved to third on a Rutschman two out single. Rutschman moved as if attempting a steal on the next pitch, baiting Jansen into a throw and giving Mullins lots of time to come in to score. It seems no one told Mullins, though, and he was caught flat footed. Bo Bichette read the play well and threw right back to Jansen to hang Mullins in a run-down for the third out.
Berrios calmed it down from there. He worked a clean inning around a Santander single in the fifth and worked his first 1-2-3 inning in the sixth. In the end, he allowed seven hits, two walks and a hit batter in six innings while striking out only three. He didn’t get hit al that hard, though, and crucially he avoided the knockout blow home run, which as been an issue for him all year.
On the other side of the ledger, the lineup was on Kyle Bradish pretty consistently. They got on the board in the first, stringing together a George Springer line single, a Vladimir Guerrero jr. infield hit, a Bo Bichette fielder’s choice and a Matt Chapman sac fly to manufacture a 1-0 lead. They added A couple more in the second, when Cavan Biggio and Santiago Espinal reached on back to back singles and came home on a Springer double off the wall.
At that point Bradish clamped down for a while, retiring eight in a row. In the fifth, though, Vlad reached on a Ramon Urias throwing error and Chapman worked a two out walk to put two men on and knock Bradish out of the game. Replacement Jake Reed also struggled, walking Teoscar Hernandez to load the bases and giving up a deep double off the centre field wall to Raimel Tapia that extended the Jays’ lead to 6-2.
The bullpens took over from there. DL Hall and Tim Mayza traded 1-2-3 innings in the bottom of six and top of 7.
Bryan Baker gave up a single to Vlad in the bottom of seven (though how it wasn’t an error on Henderson I don’t know) and another to Chapman, but Bichette hit into a double play and Hernandez struck out to prevent the Jays from adding insurance.
Yimi Garcia handled the eight. After striking out Aguillar, he gave up a double to Henderson and a single to Vavra, scoring Henderson and cutting the Jay’s lead to 6-3. All that was just to set up his guy Jordan Romano for the save, though, and he promptly struck out Roughned Odor and Urias to end the inning.
Keegan Akin struck out the side in the bottom of the eighth.
Closing it out, Jordan Romano worked around a walk to Rutschman to turn in a clean ninth inning.
Jays of the Day: Berrios (0.123), Springer (0.161), Tapia (0.153)
Not so Much: Nobody
Game three goes tomorrow at 1:37pm ET. The Jays will use Alek Manoah (14-7, 2.43), Baltimore will turn to surprise ace Dean Kremer (7-5, 3.34). Let’s get the sweep.