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Great Ceremony for Jose Bautista, But Jays Lose

Chicago Cubs v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images

Cubs 5 Jays 4

Jordan Hicks hasn’t been the strikeout machine that was advertised. He had a rough ninth, giving up a pair of doubles to give the Cubs a lead.

The Jose Bautista ceremony was excellent. Very very well done. Jose was very touched, dabbing at his eyes constantly. He wasn’t the only one teary-eyed. Few things get me all that emotional, but that got me.

I loved seeing all his old teammates and managers and coaches and all. Marcus Stroman came out of the Cubs dugout to give him a hug. It was great and it reminded me how much I liked Bautista.

His girls are very cute.

Chris Bassitt had, well, you choose:

  • A good night with a bad inning.
  • A bad night.

He gave up four runs in the fourth. The inning went double, walk, RBI single and Dansby Swanson home run. Then he got three quick outs and would go on to have nine straight outs before being pulled after the sixth.

Other than those four batters, Bassitt only gave up one hit and one walk.

But then he gave up 4 runs over 6 innings.

Yimi Garcia and Erik Swanson each pitched an inning of scoreless relief.

Offensively, we got four runs, but that wasn’t enough. We scored:

  • One in the third: Daulton Varsho doubled, and, two outs later, Vlad singled him home.
  • Two in the fifth: Santiago Espinal singled and, an out later, Whit Merrifield homered.
  • One in the sixth: Davis Schneider got a hit after going hitless in three games, after the record-tying first three games of his career (he also had a walk today). Cavan Biggio walked, and Santiago Espinal hit a ground-rule double. The ball bouncing over the center field wall was very costly. Biggio would have scored from first. The difference in the game was about 4 feet of wall?

That was the end of the scoring.

We had 8 hits, with four extra-base hits, three doubles and a home run.

Espinal had two hits. Chapman and Kirk went 0 for 4 each.

Vlad was caught stealing with two outs and two strikes on Chapman in the seventh. I do not like him stealing, but it isn’t awful to steal with two out and two strikes. If you get there, a lucky hit might score you. If caught, Chapman starts over the next inning with no strikes.

But Vlad shouldn’t be stealing.

Cavan was absolutely robbed on a strike call that must have been 2 inches off the plate. This caused the count to get to 1-2 (2-1 is a much better hitter’s count) and forced Cavan to swing a pitch he might have taken.

Merrifield had an exceptional catch in left in the first inning (and I found out I’m not allowed to take a momentary break from commenting. Matt Chapman had a couple of nice plays. But we didn’t score enough again.

Jays of the Day: Espinal (.230 WPA) and Swanson (.104). Oh, let’s give one to Garcia too (.086).

The Other Award: Hicks (-.306), Bassitt (-.190), Kirk (-.150), Chapman (-.128) and Varsho (-.120) (though he had a couple of nice catches in the outfield, so maybe he should be exempt).

Tomorrow is a 1:30 Eastern start, I might be a little late to the game thread, I’m playing squash in the morning. Ryu starts for the Jays. Jameson Taillon (7-6, 5.17) starts for the Cubs.

Please win tomorrow.