buehrlefields

Do I even bother pointing out that the dumb Yankees and Orioles are surging a little bit as well? I guess I already did. And while they’re maybe not quite keeping pace with the Jays, they’re not exactly falling back dramatically, either, with the Yankees being winners of three straight and the O’s of two. Seven it ain’t. A 9-1 record over their last ten games it ain’t (and right now the next-best record in the AL over the past ten games belongs to five teams, all of whom are a paltry 6-4). But both of those AL East foes are within one game of the Jays in the loss column, and just two and two-and-a-half games back overall. Obviously it’s too early in the season for scoreboard watching of this sort, it’s just… let’s not lose sight of the fact that if the Jays really hang in this like it looks as though they’re capable, this is going to be a fight. One that’ll be fun as fuck and they seem well equipped for, but one nonetheless. How awesome is that?

Now the Jays just have to keep it going. By which I mean Buehrle’s gotta Buehrle. And kick the Rays while they’re down.

That’s not too much to ask, is it? Though… fuck, with the way this offence is going, the Jays may not have any other choice but to win.

I can live with that.

Scuttlebutt

Pitcher wins are meaningless as fuck, but if Buehrle gets his ninth before the end of May, that’s pretty impressive, I guess. Maybe not pretend-Miguel-Cabrera-had-a-better-year-than-Mike-Trout-because-he-won-some-outdated-phony-title impressive, but kinda cool.

Brendan Kennedy tweets that “at 35, Buehrle is oldest MLB pitcher to win 8 of first 10 games since Randy Johnson (38) & Curt Schilling (35) did it for Diamondbacks in 2002.”

Arden Zwelling reminds us that Colby Rasmus had told reporters the other day that he didn’t want to do a rehab assignment once he was fully healed from his hamstring issue. Yeah… John Gibbons says that he’ll definitely be heading out on a rehab assignment. If it ain’t broke… (Also: Colby hearing footsteps?).

Arden also tweets that Gibbons says he thinks this year’s streak-team is stronger than the one that won 11 games in a row last season. Let’s hope so. The Jays went 36-52 post-streak last year.

Bad news for those of you hoping for the Jays to ramp up their pursuit of the Royals’ James Shields: according to a tweet from Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star, Yordano Ventura’s MRI came back clean and he’ll only miss one start. Good news for those of you hoping for the Jays to keep rolling: the start he’ll miss was slated to be on Saturday at Rogers Centre.

Following last night’s game, John Lott of the National Post wrote about the healing Rasmus and Sergio Santos, and how the pieces may fit once everybody’s healthy. (HELLO KEVIN PILLAR!!!!)

The Jays have signed left-hander Mike Zagurski to a minor league deal, after the Triple-A hurler opted out of his prior minor league deal with Cleveland. MLBTR has the details. D-meh-pth.

Chris Zelkovich of Yahoo! gives us a ratings roundup from over the weekend, and includes Monday, where the Jays drew 836,000 viewers. Somebody tell Rogers, for fuck sakes.

Andy Martino of the New York Daily News tweets that the MRI on Noah Syndergaard came back clean. Shift your Shadenfreude to Round Rock, I guess.

On the other end of the spectrum, Lott points out that Ricky Romero starts tonight for Buffalo [tugs at the inside of shirt collar].

Because he’s awesome and it would be hilarious to see an army of folks wearing them, I’ll point out again that that Encarnacion parrot shirt is back selling this week, and also available in lady sizes/cuts and stuff, apparently.

TV: Sportsnet

Next game(s): Tomorrow, 7:07 PM ET vs. Tampa Bay

For those of you who’ll be out and about, be sure to follow all the action on your phone with theScore app.

And now, the lineups… 

Toronto Blue Jays

SS Jose Reyes (S)
LF Melky Cabrera (S)
DH Jose Bautista (R)
1B Adam Lind (L)
DH Edwin Encarnacion (R)
3B Juan Francisco (L)
2B Brett Lawrie (R)
C Dioner Navarro (S)
CF Anthony Gose (L)

LHP Mark Buehrle

Tampa Bay Rays

SS Yunel Escobar (R)
3B Evan Longoria (R)
2B Logan Forsythe (R)
CF Desmond Jennings (R)
LF Sean Rodriguez (R)
RF Wil Myers (R)
1B James Loney (L)
C Jose Molina (R)
DH Matt Joyce (L)

RHP Alex Cobb

Comments (577)

  1. Think they should use Dusty
    as the right handed setup man?
    Redmond and Delabar
    both scare the crap out of me.

  2. Time to tack on another 5.

  3. Janssen will save the team. He always does.

  4. Why would you wait to hear the “roof report” on the radio when you can look it up immediately on what the kids call, an Internet?

  5. Is it just me or should the EE Parrot T-Shirt have the parrot on the forearm rather than the shoulder? I’ve always visualized the parrot on the arm.

  6. Lights have been a problem on low liners like that since the Dome opened. Joe Carter used to have a lot of trouble with those.

  7. C’mon guys…make this a non-save situation.

  8. Longoria is a fucking animal at the hot corner with that glove, super pumped he missed that one!

  9. We should not have been seeing Casey in this game.

  10. Jansen time.

  11. The Jays dugout reacts to Eddie’s Mars shot. Check out Josh Thole’s eyes.

    http://i.imgur.com/Kuq6NYC.jpg

  12. Bautista plate approach this year been amazing. I felt like last year he tried to match Edwin homer for homer. This year I think he’s come to full terms that he doesn’t need to hit 50 bombs, he can hit 35 with a .300 avg and a .400 obp

  13. What were the fans yelling at Yunel?

  14. Don’t look now but my boy Brett has a 6 game hitting streak and back to back 2 hit games.

  15. Lawrie looks pissed

  16. That was an adventure….

  17. Joey Gloves!!!

  18. Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck ! Dont EVER do THAT again!

  19. Bauts wants to add to his style points count…

  20. Yikes ! who was THAT??

  21. This season is so sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet

  22. BALL GAME!!!

  23. Mighty Casey has struck ‘em out!

  24. Mini sweep! OCHO!

  25. I love you Casey

  26. That’s the way you debate!!

  27. 0 1 2 3

  28. Curveball – Ballgame !

    Oh Buck you wordsmith.

    Love it.

  29. YEAH BOUY!!!

  30. Fuck you Maddon

  31. Casey Janssen is Dr. Shizzletastic!

  32. I don’t get what’s going on here…about a week ago I woke up and every thing started to go right…

    WTF???

  33. Awsomwe, asome stuff going on with this team right now! Go Jays!

  34. I just don’t feel right.

  35. nice to see Maddon’s button pushing coming up empty. Hate that guy and his genius rep. Of course, I think he got in Romero’s head and never left, so maybe he is one, I don’t know.

    • Really, didn’t Maddon discover that Romero was throwing balls all along? So it wasn’t genius so much as figuring out what was going on. but I give him credit for that.

      • In my mind, it was Maddon counter-intuitively stacking his line up with lefties vs. Romero that made Ricky’s mind assplode. But that was back when everything Maddon touched turned to gold.

  36. Casey Janssen pacing around like a caged animal makes me sooooo nervous. But it’s happening. It’s still happening.

  37. Buehrle 9-1

    Yanks and OriLoLes losing…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7bF38rT7et0

  38. Zaun saying Buehrle didn’t have a “quality start”

    Trooolll

  39. Jays kicking ass…and Habs winning…’tis a good night.

  40. You know what’s crazy?

    Of those 22 losses, 9 are bullpen losses.

    Outside of the shit weather in Minnesota and that mini-seizure the pen went through in Cleveland and Pittsburgh, the season has been amazing.

    • Booster Juice for Everyone !

    • Exactly, the Starting staff has been pretty good. Without a few of those meltdowns this time is running away with it.

    • Don’t look back.

      Forward, ever forward.

    • Seems like a completely different team with no Morrow, Rogers gone, Janssen back, and Happ going late in games. Feels like we don’t see the BP one quarter as much as before, and Casey is just automagic! I know knock on wood he will blow one eventually just by law of averages, but no reason he can’t go 25 to 30 times before he does.

  41. My baseball penis is so hard right now.

  42. Jays are also close to the team record for wins and winning percentage in a month.

    19-9 in May I think.

  43. I’m just riding this winning wave. We’re gonna lose eventually, but this is amazing. Not superstitious but I’ll keep drinking rum for each game, just to be safe.

    • Be all you can be.

    • If they go 60-51 the rest of the way they win 90 games

      That’s not a tall order for this team.

      • It’s hard not to get excited, pessimist that I am, I feel this year has the makings of something special

      • If they maintain their 31-22 pace the rest of the way, that translates to a 95-67 record. Woah.

        Just hope they can keep the winning ways going for as long as it takes because you know the Yankees and Red Sox aren’t going away, and probably not the Rays either.

  44. Gettin offence throughout the lineup.
    Gonna take a hellva pitching performance to beatem all at once.
    Game Threats averaging 500 comments per game.
    Can’t wait for tommorrow to do it all again.

  45. I can live with the setup role bullpen reaching a bit as the only sore spot for any future Blue Jays games. Keep up the streak, Go Blue Jays!

  46. Yankees looooooose!!

  47. C’mon Brewers comeback!!

  48. Is this what those Parrot shirts use to say?

    http://i.imgur.com/LLRrKyn.jpg

    if not, they should have!

  49. One small thing that works in our favour at the moment… the two last place teams in the division (Rays and Red Sux) have also played the most intradivision games so far (24 and 26 respectively, compared to 21 for the other three), so it’ll be a bit tougher for them to make up the difference as the season goes along.

    • Actually other way around, the less intra-division games played the better as it means only one team trailing us can gain at a time. If they all are playing out if the division then all can gain on us.

      • However since tie breaker rules also take effect boston on who wins the division, boston is kinda still f’d. They are 9-17 againstthe division, Tampa is 11-13. Jays record is 12-9 vs division, Yankees 11-9, and Baltimore 13-8. Each team plays 76 games against the divison. boston could still turn it around but have dug themselves a big hole for tiebreaker for division lead, if they end up with the same record at the top.

  50. Gallardo walk-off double!

    HAHAHAHA

  51. WE INTERRUPT THIS MUNICIPAL AFFAIRS PROGRAM, FOR A FOOTBALL GAME

    http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_mc5uy5S9l01qizch9o1_500.gif

  52. I dont get it. They had two outs and nobody on and walked reynolds intentionally? That is just plain stupid.

  53. Rajai just stole 3rd on the catcher throwing the ball back to the pitcher. Unreal.

  54. Gibby mentioned “seeing that Parrot a lot” in the post game press conference, talking about EE. BWARK!!

  55. Boys, we fucking EARNED this shit right here.

    I dont know about you guys but I have been watching shitty hopeless Jays baseball since i was a wee boy, just hoping they could finally make the playoffs, or at least be in serious contention for a playoff spot. Only to be disappointed come June. But I always said to myself, “Maybe next year Loup there it is, maybe next year”.

    This is that FUCKING year (unless we collapse or something, knock on wood). And I intend to bathe in the awesomeness of this year as much as possible.

    GO FUCKING JAYS, FUCK YEAH

    • The talking heads were bashing this Downed Jays team in the early spring as a team destined for doom because our lack of starting pitching talent and only acquiring Dinner Navarro. The whole batting lineup is the same, but what greatness can happen when you rid the team of JPA’s and Bonerface-io’s guaranteed outs off of the lineup and replacing it with some journeyman hitters that absorb more pitches and hits for contact. Don’t forget Diner’s resume…he’s got a World Series and multiple playoff appearances catching for the Rays. The pitching staff also no longer have to put up with JPA’s passed balls and shitty play-calling too.

    • +1

  56. I’ve said before that unless this team went on a winning streak, I thought it was 80-85 win team. Thanks you for the streak. This weekend I spent my birthday at the ballpark with my son, with roof open, the Jays in first place and in a middle of the winning streak. Everything is coming up Millhouse. Consider me converted. It doesn’t get much better than that.

  57. +36 run differential in May, and that includes a 15-4 loss. This is a really good team.

  58. Looking at things objectively, this crazy offense isn’t going to last forever. The bullpen really needs to tighten things up. The rate the Jays are hitting home runs likely will regress. Let’s hope they can manufacture runs when the bombs don”t come in bunches. Also, as much as I like Gibbons, I think he needs to pick his spots better for pulling starters. The timing of his decision to yank Buehrle last night was just fucked.

    Love the winning streak – love this team – but the warts this team has should be cause for concern.

    • Traditionally, Gibby is one of the game’s best at managing his pitching staff.

    • I’m tempted to agree to keep my expectations down, but I don’t know:

      Reyes – offense below his career level and his BABIP is more than 50 points under his career average

      Melky – maybe he’ll regress, but he’s still only having the second best season of his career

      Bautista – he’s been similar to 2010-11 Bautista, and I don’t see why he can’t sustain it if he’s healthy

      Edwin – he’s doing pretty much exactly what he did the last two years

      Lind – I’m sure the numbers will regress somewhat, but the strict platoon makes a big difference

      Francisco – every game he keeps his numbers up makes it seem more and more real. No, I don’t think he’ll maintain a 168 wRC+, but the power is obviously ridiculous and the walk rate is STILL at over 12%.

      Lawrie – still carrying his worst wRC+ of his career. There’s reason to believe he can keep getting better.

      Navarro – he’s shown he can be better than this, and he’s obviously capable of maintaining numbers that are still below his career average.

      Bench – I’m sure we’ll see some regression here, as Tolleson, Thole and Gose aren’t going to maintain what they’ve done offensively.

      That doesn’t even consider that Rasmus still isn’t in the lineup.

      • If that wasn’t long enough, I should add that I absolutely love Gibbons’ willingness to go to his bench early and make the Tolleson/Francisco switch in the 5th/6th inning or bring Lind in to the game if a lefty starter is out early. It seems to make a big difference because opposing managers are less wiling to burn an extra reliever or bring in a specialist in that time in the game. Sure, the Jays have fewer bench options later in the game, but that doesn’t really matter if they can make the most of the matchups early on.

        Four man bench!

    • Oh boy, “manufactured runs” again. This is the AL and they aren’t the fuckin’ Royals.

      But it’s not like they can’t score runs without the long ball either. They scored 5 (4 of them with 2 outs) of their runs last night on four singles and a bases-loaded balk. The night before they scored 8 of their 10 runs without dingers. And how about the game against Oakland where Reyes and Gose scored 4 runs on groundouts?

      This is a very well-balanced lineup and there’s plenty of reason to think their success will continue.

      • Sure there’s plenty of reason to think their success will continue. But there’s reasons to be concerned too. There’s nothing wrong with taking a step back and being critical about areas that the team could improve upon. The things they are doing well with right now won’t last forever, and their deficiencies very well could cost them a lot of games, much like it did in April.

        By manufacturing runs, I meant scoring runs without hitting bombs. I’m no Zaunbie. They do have the 4th-best OBP in the game right now, and that includes having Rasmus’ .266 OBP and Goins’ .203 OBP for a good chunk of the season. They can do it, but when the home runs stop, we’ll have to see if they can still score runs.

        • I get where you’re coming from, but the Jays offense isn’t going to collectively turn into Ryan Goins overnight. They’ll likely continue to score a lot of runs because they’re just fucking GOOD. It’s not like any of the hitters are performing way above their heads.

          Continued positive regression from Reyes, Lawrie, Rasmus, Navarro etc. will help to even things out.

  59. Ride the high, folks, and then look at the fundamentals and similarities of other years.

    Reyes – Cabrera – Bautista – Encarnacion might be the scariest starting four in baseball. Add Lind/Francisco, Lawrie, Navarro, Rasmus, and 2B and you have a great lineup. Think summer of 2012 before Snider was dumped at the trade deadline… when 3 of the starters went dead in one week the Jays managed to score about 6 runs / game and maintain a .500 record (things fell apart when the starting lineup suffered the same kind of fate).

    Still, you are missing a solid rotation. Buehrle should come down to earth again — he is pitching extremely smart but his WHIP is still above 1.2 but he is getting timely outs and good defense behind him.

    RA is decent, not great, but decent. Then you have Happ, Hutch, and Kendriks (for now), not exactly the greatest confidence boosters. The bullpen is good, but not 2013 great in that Delabar struggles with fastball command, Cecil doesn’t look nearly as tricky, and Loup is less than stellar.

    At this point, there’s no reason to think that the lineup is going to go anywhere with regards to its hitting. Reyes, Cabrera, Bautista, and Edwin are all hitting to their potential. So if they can continue to score an average of 5 runs per game (they certainly can do that), you gotta expect the winning trend to continue no matter how average the other three starters (not Dicke/Buehrle) are doing!

    And even if the Jays go 55-54 to end the season, that’s still 87 wins, which is WAY more than we expected at the start.

  60. ESPN on Defence; outfield supposedly “worst” fly ball efficiency:

    The Blue Jays are one team that does a lot with their infield defense with regards to positioning (they rank among baseball’s leaders in shifts) to deal with deficiencies and hitter tendencies. Perhaps there’s some work that could be done with their outfield as well.

    http://espn.go.com/blog/sweetspot/post/_/id/47766/notes-on-d-efficient-team-defenses

    • Rasmus wasn’t getting to as many balls as we saw last season, and Bautista’s range has always been average at best. It’s not a surprise to see the Jays ranked so low, but with Gose in the lineup I think we can expect that number to rise.

      • Have Gose’s reads off the bat improved? It’s an area I’m not overly confident in my ability to judge. He used to catch a lot of flak for it but those criticisms have died down a lot without much mention of the improvement itself.

      • Hopefully Colby’s diminished range this year is just SSS, since a ton of his value in 2013 came from elite defensive numbers.

  61. Still not sure why the Jays haven’t taught & filmed a Parrot saying:

    squawk
    Home Run! Home Run!
    Encarnacion
    squawk
    Home Run! Encarnacion
    squawk

    to show on the scoreboard when Edwin hits a home run.

  62. Put a star beside this team.

  63. Tim McGraw is back in Toronto on July 20th, but that is a Sunday afternoon vs. Rangers so no need to rush as much as last year (too bad, a motivated Buehrle is a good thing):

    http://mlbfancave.mlb.com/fancave/blog/article.jsp?content=article&content_id=54829036

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