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Jays Beat Orioles

Baltimore Orioles v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images

Orioles 1 Blue Jays 4

Sometimes you need a bit of luck.

We scored our first run on a bloop single, a popup that fell between the infielder and the outfielders off George Springer’s bat, which scored Brandon Belt from second.

And then in the sixth, with two outs, Belt and Vlad walked (ten-pitch at bat). That got the Orioles to take starter Grayson Rodriguez out of the game for Shintaro Fujinami. He walked Springer to load the bases. Then consecutive hit batters Matt Chapman (hit in the middle of the back) and Danny Jansen (off his hand) got us two runs. Then Daulton Varsho had a broken-bat grounder straight at 3B Gunnar Henderson, who booted it. Suddenly we had a three-run lead without getting a hit that inning.

Buck observed that the last five batters hadn’t put a ball in play and that fielders aren’t as sharp when standing for a long time. It makes some sense, but then I think, ‘These guys are pros’. They should be able to deal with that. I’d love to see numbers to back it up.

We got a very good start from Yusei Kikuchi. 6 innings, 6 hits, 1 earned, 1 walk and 3 strikeouts. Usually, he’d get more than 3 strikeouts, but he was very good.

He gave up the run in the fifth. It started with a James McCann liner to center that Kevin Kiermaier cut off nicely but then dropped it. Thankfully Varsho was there to pick it up, but it turned a single into a double (not ruled an error). Two outs later, Adley Rutschman singled him home. Ryan Mountcastle singled to put runners on the corners, but a line out ended the inning.

Three of his six hits against were in that fifth inning.

Yimi Garcia pitched a nice seventh, hitting 99 on the radar.

Jordan Hicks was robbed by the plate umpire on a full count pitch, so he gave up a leadoff walk, but a strikeout and a double play ball followed that.

Erik Swanson picked up his 3rd save of the season. He got a strikeout, then gave up a single that Kiermaier almost made a nice sliding catch on. It was one that I expect Kevin to catch. Then a second strikeout and a pickoff of the runner at first. How often do you see a game end with a pickoff at first base? That seems like a Jays base runner-level move.

Once again, the bats didn’t show up. Just three hits on the day. Belt had two of them, including our only extra-base hit, a double.

Jays of the Day: Kikuchi (.205 WPA), Springer (.152) and Chapman (.112). Vlad likely deserves an honourable mention for that walk.

The Other Award: DeJong (-.119, for an 0 for 3) in his first game with the Jays.

Tomorrow we have an afternoon game, 3:00 Eastern start. Kevin Gausman (8-5, 3.10) goes for the split. Jack Flaherty (7-5, 4.43) gets his first start for the Orioles after being a deadline trade from the Cardinals.