Toronto finally ended their 6 game losing streak on Sunday in game 3 against the Kansas City Royals, 5-2. Brad Litsch took the mound for the Jays and seemed to be exactly what the doctor ordered. The win makes their record 11-15 but keeps them in last place of the AL East just 3.5 games back from the division leading Orioles.
The offense finally got it together getting double digit hits for the 1st time in 6 games when they faced the Detroit Tigers on April 20th. The exact number of hits was 12 for this game including 4 extra base hits, 2 of which came from Alex Rios. Rios took the leadoff spot for this game going 4-for-5 with a double and a triple and 3 runs scored. His batting average is now up to .330 which is currently a career high. Scott Rolen has also played well since making his comeback from his injury going 2-for-5 including a solo-homer in the 1st inning, 2 RBI and a run scored. He now has 1 homer on the season and 4 RBI. Aaron Hill had a nice game as well going 2-for-4 bringing his batting average to .284 this season. Finally a game we can speak of where Toronto got the necessary hits to take the game getting 2 runs in the 1st, 1 in the 5th to take the lead, and added 2 insurance runs in the 9th making the score 5-2.
Brad Litsch took the mound for the Blue Jays and pitched the most important game of the season so far stopping the 6 game losing streak in its tracks. He worked 7 innings deep only allowing 5 hits, 2 runs, 1 earned and struck out 4. He earned the win for Toronto bringing his record to 3-1 this season and his ERA to 4.85. B.J. Ryan came in for the 8th getting his 1st hold of the season while striking out 1 in the process. As a strange decision Jesse Carlson came in to close the game for the Jays and did just that recording his 1st save of the season. Gil Meche got the start for KC and had a rough night against Jays hitters. He pitched 6 and 2/3rds innings giving up 9 hits, 3 runs, 1 walk and a homer. He was given the loss for the game bringing his record to 1-4 and his ERA to an ugly 7.22.
A good game for Toronto and it is exactly the kind of game the Jays needed from both the bats and pitchers. If we can see more games like this where both sides come together we will see many more wins roll our way.
Toronto lost another close one in game 2 of the 3 game set against the Kansas City Royals on Saturday 2-1. The lack of timely hits has been the Blue Jays Achilles heel this season and it was no different in this game. The loss is their 6th in a row dropping Toronto’s record to 10-15. The loss also leaves them in last place of the AL East keeping them 4.5 games back from the 1st place Baltimore Orioles.
The offense actually collected more hits then the Royals but only produced 1 run. They also only recorded 2 extra base hits getting a double from Rolen and another from Zaun. Rolen went 1-for-4 getting walked once, struck out once, and he stole his 1st base of the season. Catcher Greg Zaun went 1-for-3 and scored the only run of the game for the Jays. Alex Rios was the guy who brought Zaun in going 1-for-4 and recording his 13th RBI of the season and also stole his 6th base of the year. David Eckstein also stole a base giving him 2 steals for the season. Matt Stairs has done a solid job filling the DH role going 2-for-4 in this game and now has his batting average up to .328.
Shawn Marcum got the start for Toronto and pitched a solid game. He only allowed 4 hits, 2 runs, 3 walks, and 4 Ks but gave up just 1 too many runs. He also gave up a homer to Jose Guillen in the 6th inning giving KC the lead at 2-1 which would end up being the final. Marcum’s record is now 2-2 and his ERA stands at 3.24. Luke Hochevar took the mound for the Royals and had a very good game. He pitched 6 innings giving up 6 hits and only 1 run while striking out 3. He was given the win for KC bringing his record to 1-1 this year and his ERA is at 5.91. Joakin Soria came in to close the game for the Royals and did just that getting his 6th save of the season.
Another close game that the Jays just couldn’t get because of how the offense struggled. We would be talking about a few more wins if the bats could give the same amount of effort that the pitchers are giving. Toronto will try to end the streak on Sunday as they play the final game against the Royals already down 2 games in the series.
Toronto dropped their 5th game in a row against the Kansas City Royals on Friday 8-4. They were so close to taking this game from KC that they could taste it but lost in the late innings. The loss keeps them in last place of the AL East and they continue to struggle to get the offense rolling.
Scott Rolen returned to the Blue Jay lineup and had a solid return after suffering a hand injury before the season began. He went 1-for-3 with 2 RBI. His return is going to be vital for the Jays because they are struggling quite a bit to get the offense clicking. Alex Rios also had a nice game for the club going 2-for-4 with a run scored. His batting average is now up to an impressive .305 as he continues to improve after the massive deal he inked at the beginning of the season. Lyle Overbay also went 2-for-4 including a solo-homer off Zack Greinke in the 7th. The homer was his 1st of the season and the RBI give him 6. Vernon Wells also brought in a run but went 0-for-4 in the game. His RBI total is now at 17 but his batting average has dropped to .277. The Jays only recorded 8 hits but were in the lead into the bottom of the 8th. The new look Kansas City Royals didn’t give up though collecting 6 runs to take an 8-4 lead and the game.
A.J. Burnett took the mound for Toronto and pitched a solid game. He worked 7 1/3rds innings allowing 8 hits, 5 runs, 3 earned, 3 walks, and 6 K’s. He took the loss for the Jays bringing his record to 2-2 this season and his ERA to 6.07. Scott Downs came in for Burnett with the lead but was stung for 3 hits, 3 runs, all earned and 1 walk. He didn’t even make it out of the inning, actually he didn’t even record an out. He was given the blown save giving him 1 for the season and bringing his ERA to 3.27. Zack Greinke got the start for KC and pitched a very strong game going 7 innings deep only allowing 5 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, and 4 K’s. His only slip up was the solo-homer Overbay hit. He didn’t get the win because after he left the game the lead he worked to get was given up by Leo Nunez. Nunez had a rather interesting game for the Royals recording both a blown save and a win. He was given a blown save because when he came in his team had 2-1 lead. He gave up 3 runs in the top of the 8th to Blue Jay hitters but was let off the hook when KC struck for 6 runs and the game. The win is his 2nd of the season and the blown save was his 1st.
Almost a streak ender but Toronto pitching collapsed, giving the game up and continuing the slide. They will try and break the losing in game 2 vs KC on Saturday.
The Blue Jays lost their 4th game in a row and dropped all 3 games of a series against the Tampa Bay Rays at the Disney Wide World of Sports 5-3. The loss brings their record to 10-13 this season and puts them in dead last in the AL East.
The offense didn’t look very good in this game, and since the releasing of Frank Thomas, the Jays haven’t won. They collected 7 hits in the game including 2 extra base hits. Aaron Hill went 1-for-4 with 1 run. His batting average is now at .292 this season. Marco Scutaro went 1-for-4 as well and recorded his 7th RBI of the season. Scutaro’s run at 3rd base may be coming to an end as news has come that the Jays are looking to activate Scott Rolen from the 15-day DL. The addition of Rolen will hopefully improve the struggling offense for Toronto because Scutaro is hitting an ugly .200 this season.
Dustin McGowan took the mound for the Blue Jays and had a rough night. He worked 4 innings allowed 4 hits, 5 runs, 6 strike outs but countered those with 7 walks. His ERA is now at 4.18 this season and now has his record at 1-2. Manager John Gibbons went through 5 more pitchers in the game including B.J. Ryan who pitched in the 8th. He allowed just 1 hit and struck out 1 batter in his appearance. His ERA still stands at 0.00 so far this season. Jeremy Accardo pitched just 1/3rd of an inning but didn’t allow any hits. His ERA is at 8.64 which is something he’ll need to improve on soon if he hopes of competing for the closer role with B.J. Ryan.
The Jays need to get their act together soon if they have any hope of putting up a fight in the AL East. This isn’t a good time to fall into a slump especially since the last 3 losses were against division foes Tampa. They need to get it going because the Sox have found their grove and they Yanks are soon to find theirs.
The Blue Jays won the 2nd game of the 4 game set with the Detroit Tigers 3-2, evening the series at a game a piece. Dustin McGowan took the mound for the Jays and pitched a solid game. The win brings the Jays record to 9-9 this season and leaves them in the middle of the pack in the AL East.
Toronto didn’t have a great game offensively but produced just enough runs to sneak by the Tigers. Alex Rios hit a 1st inning solo homer off Jeremy Bonderman giving the Blue Jays the early lead. The homer was only his 2nd of the season but was his 11th RBI. His batting average is now at a strong .324 as he went 2-for-4 in the game. Matt Stairs, who has now taken the place of the former Blue Jay Frank Thomas, went 2-for-3 with a run scored in the game. Aaron Hill also had a strong game going 1-for-4 including a double and a run scored. Hill is also batting over .300 this season standing strong at .314.
Dustin McGowan got the start and had a pretty good game for his ball club. He pitched 7 innings of solid work allowing 7 hits, 2 runs, and just 1 strike out. He earned the win in the game bringing his record to 1-1 this season and his ERA to 3.38. B.J. Ryan came on in the 9th attempting to get his 2nd save of the season. He was successful striking out all 3 batters in the process. Once again he looked good after coming back from missing a majority of this young season recovering from surgery. Jeremy Bonderman didn’t have as much success as Toronto pitchers going 5 innings deep allowing 5 hits 3 runs but he continued to give the Jays chances in his 6 walks. These chances were capitalized on as Bonderman was charged for all the runs the Jays collected.
Good game for the Blue Jays and they seem like they should be wins right now as bad as Detroit has been this season. Hopefully Toronto can take a few more wins before the Tigers snap out of this season long slump.
Next Up: Toronto will play game 3 at Rogers Centre against the Detroit Tigers. A.J. Burnett (1-1) will take on Detroit lefty Nate Robertson (0-1).
It’s been a total of 24 hours since Frank Thomas, the struggling designated hitter, voiced his unhappiness with being benched by skipper John Gibbons. Before being released The Big Hurt was batting .167 with 3 homers and 11 RBI in the 16 games that he played.
He showed his displeasure once he was put to the bench to make way for the other DH on the roster Matt Stairs. Thomas said “Basically, I’ve been told that I’m not going to be in that lineup, Manager John Gibbons told me that this morning. I see it as something else is going on. We’ll see how that plays out.” Thomas was correct in his assumption that something else was going on, and it looks like the team was planning to get rid of him.
Toronto GM J.P. Ricciardi said that the release was of ‘mutual consent’ and that they didn’t want him to be unhappy and Thomas handled the situation with class. He also said “Our best opportunity is to put other guys in the lineup at this point.”
Last season Thomas hit .277 with 26 home runs and 95 RBI, a pretty good season for a guy who is nearing the age of 40. He currently has 516 career homers but will fall short of the 304 plate appearances needed for him to earn his $10 million option for the 2009 season. In the contract it was ordered that he must make 1,000 plate appearances in the 2 season he was signed with the Blue Jays. In the 2007 season he made a hefty 624 appearances leaving him only 376 more to make some big cash in ’09.
As far as I know Thomas is looking to continue his career with another ball club. Keep an eye on the teams that want to take a chance on him. Struggling or not, The Big Hurt will find his way out of the slump and get some team a solid 20-30 homers.
Toronto opened up the 1st game of the scheduled 4 game home stand against the Detroit Tigers in an 8-4 loss. Rookie starter David Purcey took the mound for the Jays and showed some flashes of what he can potentially be, but he also showed what he needs much improvement on. The loss is Toronto’s 3rd in a row and brings their record to 8-9 this season.
Not much offense to speak of especially since the Jays only recorded 4 runs on just 3 hits for the game. One of the runs came from a solo homer by 1st basemen Rob Barajas in the bottom of the 2nd inning tying the score at 1. Toronto added 3 more runs in the 5th getting RBI from LF Shannon Stewart, who had 2, and 1 from 2nd basemen Aaron Hill making the score 4-1. Detroit added 2 runs in the 6th, had a 4 run inning in the 7th, and got 1 more in the 9th making the score 8-4 which ended up being the final. There isn’t much positive to speak of on the offensive side as the Blue Jays offense is still trying to find its power. They are going to have to collect more then 3 hits against the powerful Detroit Tigers offense if they want to take a game in this 4 game set.
Rookie start David Purcey had a shaky game against the Tigers going 4 1/3rd innings deep allowing only 2 hits, 1 run, struck out 3, but he walked a disastrous 7 Detroit batters. He was able to keep the score under control before he was pulled in the 5th inning giving way for reliever Jason Frasor. Frasor went 1 1/3rds innings giving up 3 hits and 2 runs. He handed the ball over to Jeremy Accardo who came in and pitched just 2/3rds innings but he gave up 3 more runs and recorded a blown save and the loss bringing his record to 0-3 this season. Pitching was a bit shaky and with all the walks it was just a matter of time before Detroit took advantage.
With only 3 hits Toronto was able to collect 4 runs but 4 runs might not be enough to put away the Tigers, who are starting to come out of their season beginning slump. Also a quick note about Frank Thomas who is upset with the fact that skipper John Gibbons benched him because of his poor start. Gibby has said that Thomas will most likely see less AB’s this season and we will see more of Matt Stairs at the DH spot. Keep your eyes peeled to see how the situation unfolds because The Big Hurt is pretty upset about the decision.
Next Up: Toronto will play game 2 vs. Detroit looking to even the series. Dustin McGowan will get the start for the Jays and will take on Detroit righty Jeremy Bonderman.
Toronto finished up the final game of the 2 game series with the Texas Rangers in a 4-1 loss. Roy Halladay worked all 9 innings in a gutty performance but it just wasn’t his night. The Loss brings the Jays record to an even 8-8 and puts them in 4th place just above the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL East.
This is the 2nd game in a row for the Jays where they haven’t recorded a long ball. This might not seem like all that big of a deal but when you consider the fact that they played 5 extra innings of baseball last night it kind of makes you wonder where the bats have gone. They only recorded 1 RBI in this game on 8 hits. Included in those 8 hits is only 1 extra base hit which was a double off the bat of catcher Greg Zaun. The lone RBI came from lead-off man David Eckstein who brought home Toronto’s only run in the bottom of the 7th inning. Eckstein went 2-for-5 in the game with the solo RBI. The only other performance worth mentioning is that of Alex Rios who has continued to make solid contact recording 2 more hits in this game bringing his average to .328. Rios also stole a base in this game bringing his total to 5 on the season but even though he was in scoring position, the Jays couldn’t get the timely hit to bring him home.
Roy Halladay took the mound for Toronto and did everything in his power to keep his team alive in this game. He pitched all 9 innings allowing 11 hits, 4 runs, only 1 walk and 6 strike outs. He was given the loss for the game bringing his record to 2-2 this season and his ERA to a healthy 3.27. Vincente Padilla got the start for Texas and pretty much had his way with Toronto batters. He worked 7 innings giving up 7 hits and only 1 run. He earned the win for his team bringing his record to 2-1 this season. He handed the ball over to Jamey Wright in the 8th who blanked the Jays. Wright then handed that ball over to closer C.J. Wilson who got his 5th save of the season getting 1 strike out along the way.
There isn’t much more I can say besides Toronto needs to get the bats going if they plan on keeping up in the AL East. Boston and New York are beginning to find their way out of the below .500 hundred starts they began the season with and this can spell disaster if Toronto doesn’t find their way out of this inconsistency in the hitting department.
Next Up: Toronto will open up a 4 game series with the struggling Detroit Tigers who currently stand at 5-11. This might be the perfect match up as far as the hitters are concerned as Detroit has one of the most suspect bullpens in the MLB. Blue Jay lefty David Purcey will get his 1st start of the season filling in the whole that A.J. Burnett left after pitching in the extra inning extravaganza on Wednesday. He will match up against Tiger’s veteran south paw Kenny Rogers.
The Blue Jays opened up the first game of a 2 game set with the Texas Rangers in memorable fashion. The game took 14 innings to complete, or if you are more of a hours/minutes kind of person, try this: 4 hours 53 minutes. All that time and the Jays come up short 7-5. The loss brings Toronto’s record to 8-7.
The offense had plenty of time to get going but in innings 9 though 14 they were blanked by a number of Texas pitchers. The Jays totaled 13 hits in the game but only 2 of which were for extra bases. You’d think that in 14 innings you might record a homer but it wasn’t the case for Toronto. They did however have some interesting batting lines in this game. Like Alex Rios who went 3-for-7 including a double and a RBI. The RBI brings his total to 10 on the season and his batting average to .316. Vernon Wells notched his 15th RBI of the season going 1-for-6 in the game bringing his average to .328. Aaron hill also had a nice game going 1-for-5. His only hit was a double and he also recorded a run. Hill is currently batting an impressive .328 this season. With these strong performances it looked like Toronto would get on a roll because they scored 3 runs in the bottom of the 8th to tie the score at 5. But, like I stated above, they went scoreless from the 9th inning on leaving the door open for the Rangers to steal the game.
Jesse Litsch was given the start for Toronto and had a sub-par game. He worked 5 innings allowing 9 hits, 4 runs, a homer to Texas 1B/DH Jason Botts but he did strike out 5. Ranger lefty Kason Gabbard took the mound and had himself a solid game. He pitched 6 innings giving up 7 hits, 2 runs, 2 walks and 2 K’s. Unfortunately for both teams they had to go through a combined 16 pitchers including the 2 starters. Toronto actually had to bring in their next day start A.J. Burnett in the top of the 14th innings to try and keep the Rangers scoreless. Such was not the case as Texas brought 2 runners across making the score 7-5 which ended up being the final. Burnett was given the loss in the game making his record 1-1 this season.
This was another game where the Toronto bats went silent for a long period of time. The lack of hitting in innings 9-14 ended up being the reason they lost as they were given more then enough time to win the game in the bottom half of each inning. There is some good news that came out this game and that’s the fact that B.J. Ryan got another inning of work in. He came in for the top of the 9th and threw a scoreless inning striking out 1 in the process. Keep your eye on him as Manager John Gibbons begins shaking off the rust from the previously injured closer.
Next Up: The Jays will play the 2nd and final game of this quick series on Friday. Roy Halladay will most likely get the start because A.J. Burnett appeared in this game. Texas has righty Vincente Padilla scheduled to start.
Toronto came to the ballpark ready to swing the bat in their 11-3 victory they recorded on Tuesday afternoon. The win brings the Blue Jays record to 8-6 on the season and puts them in a tie for first place with the Baltimore Orioles, who were there opponent for this game. The win is also the final game of this short 2 game stand against the O’s which the teams split.
The offense tallied 16 hits total including 5 extra base hits in the game. It seems like every guy had a good game but SS David Eckstein had an exceptionally strong game. He was in the lead-off spot and went 3-for-4 with 1 RBI, 3 runs scored, and a stolen base. The RBI brings his total to 7 for the season and brought his average to a respectable .288. 2nd basemen Aaron Hill also had a good showing hitting 2-of-3 for 3 RBI and a run scored. The 3 RBI come from the 3 run shot he hit in the 3rd inning off O’s starter Steve Trachsel. He has his average at an impressive .340 this season and a total of 12 RBI. RF Alex Rios contributed to the offense as well going 2-for-5 with 2 RBI of his own and 2 runs scored. He is batting a steady .300 and now totals 9 RBI this season. I’m going to name one more guy who is really working to improve on the season he had last year. That guy is Vernon Wells who went 2-for-4 with 1 RBI and a run scored. He has his average at .345 this season which is an exact .100 average improvement from a year ago. There were plenty of contributors to the offense including Frank Thomas, Matt Stairs, and Greg Zaun who recorded 4 more RBI of their own. As you can see the offense was great in this one and is probably their most impressive outing on the offensive side this season.
Shawn Marcum took the mound for Toronto and worked a solid 6 and 2/3rds innings. He only allowed 4 hits, 2 runs and he struck out 4. He brought his ERA to an impressive 2.61 this season and he also recorded the win for the Jays bringing his record to 2-0. Steve Trachsel got the start for the Orioles and took most of the punishment from the Blue Jay lineup. He only pitched 2 1/3rd innings but in that time he allowed 5 hits, 5 runs (all earned), walked 3, and gave up the homer to Hill in the 3rd. His ERA is now 5.65 and he was given the loss for his performance making his record 1-2 this season.
This was by far the best game of the season for the Jays and it was by far the strongest game on the offensive side. Pitching wasn’t half bad either as they only allowed 6 hits and spread out Baltimore’s 3 runs in innings 3, 5, and 8. A great overall team effort that is definitely something Toronto can build on. Plus they are now tied for first place in the AL East.
Next Up: Toronto will open up another 2 game set but this time they will be at home and will be facing the Texas Rangers (5-9). Jesse Litsch will take the mound for Toronto and will match up against Texas lefty Kason Gabbard.
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