Tigers 3 Blue Jays 4 (10 innings)
An absolutely terrific start from Kevin Gausman. He deserved a W.
Gausman went 8 innings (something that doesn’t happen anymore) and allowed 5 hits, 3 earned, 0 walks and 11 strikeouts. Unfortunately, two of those 5 hits were home runs. He gave up a solo homer to Nick Maton in the fourth and a Kerry Carpenter two-run homer in the seventh.
He was helped out by some bad base running by the Tigers:
- In the sixth, Eric Hasse led off with a ground-rule double, but with one out, Matt Vierling hit a ground ball to short, and Hasse, for some reason, thought he should try to advance to third. He was an easy out.
- Later that inning, Vierling decided to try to steal second and, I don’t know why, decided not to slide and was thrown out. If he had slid, he would have been safe.
The Jays had their moments of bad baserunning:
- In the first, with Vladimir Guerrero on first, Matt Chapman doubled. Vlad was sent home and was out by 10-15 feet. a horrible send.
- In the sixth, Chapman was on first after a single. Daulton Varsho singled to left, and Chapman was thrown out trying to go first to third. The play was in front of him. He should have known better. being on second, with two outs, would have been just fine. Instead, the inning was over.
Our first run was a weird thing:
- Vlad hit a one-out single. An out late, Varsho singled him to second. Then Whit Merrifield hit a ball between short and third. Vlad jumped over it, rounded third (he shouldn’t have), and brushed (not making contact) past the third baseman. The Tigers shortstop fielded the ball, threw behind Vlad, and was out. But....the third base umpire called runner interference and awarded Guerrero the plate. A really weak call. If Earl Weaver was the manager, he’d still be out there, throwing a fit. The Tigers didn’t complain.
Another strange call followed that. Varsho (on second) and Merrifield (on first) pulled off a double steal. But the plate umpire sent them back. After many replays, we saw that the Tigers catcher had stepped on the umpire’s foot. They were sent back on ‘umpire interference’. A new one for me.
After 8 innings of very little defense, the Jays got two runs in the ninth to tie the game:
- Vlad singled.
- Chapman walked.
- Varsho was hit in the foot with a pitch. I hope he’s ok, I wouldn’t be surprised if he sits tomorrow.
- Merrifield gets a sac fly to center.
- Alejandro Kirk (pinch-hitting for Espinal) hit a sac fly to right to tie the game.
- Unfortunately, Danny Jansen lined one hard to left but right into a glove.
Top of the 10th. Javier Baez plays Manfred Man. Jordan Romano is to pitch. Cavan Biggio is in at third base.
- Kerry Carpenter taps on, Jansen on it quickly and throws Carpenter out at first. Vlad threw to third and almost got the runner. It was just a little offline. The Jays challenged the call, but he was safe.
- Spencer Torkelson flew to shallow right, too shallow to score.
- Akil Baddoo walked on six pitches. Jordan was being very careful.
- Eric Haase tapped one, Bo Bichette came in hard on it, made the throw to first, and Vlad made a nice stretch.
Bottom of the 10th: Jansen plays Manfred Man.
- Kiermaier puts down a good bunt along the third baseline. Nice bunt. I’m not a fan of the bunt, but that’s the spot you can use it, a one-run strategy when you only need one run.
- Springer singles threw a drawn-in infield. JAYS WIN.
We had trouble with Tigers’ starter Eduardo Rodriguez (6 innings, 7 hits, 1 earned, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts. But relievers Trey Wingenter, Jose Cisnero, and Nick Maton weren’t good.
In all, we had 9 hits, 2 walks, 1 hit batter and no home runs. Springer, Vlad, Chapman and Varsho had two hits each. We had a few with 0 fors: Bo, Espinal (.095 BA now), Jansen (.045 BA now) and Kiermaier (but he had that nice bunt).
Tim Mayza (1 hit) and Jordan Romano (starting with a runner on second) pitched a scoreless inning each.
Jays of the Day: Springer (.406 WPA), Vlad (.227, and some very good defense tonight), Romano (.132), Kirk (.109, for a walk in his only at-bat), and Chapman (.100). Gausman deserves, at least, an honourable mention, for going 8 innings of great pitching. We should have got him a W.
The Other Award: Bo (-.150), and Jansen (-.131). Kiermaier had the number (-.135), but he got the bunt down when asked, so I’m not giving him one.
The Jays are now 8-4. Not too bad, really.