Let’s try this again, eh? Just don’t get swept, and the Yankees can’t pass you. Win the series, gain ground. It’s simple stuff. Stuff that isn’t nearly as difficult to accomplish as the poor insufferable souls already convinced the Jays are fucked are pathologically desperate to think, I’m sure. Stuff they may well not accomplish, in fact. But simple stuff.
Yes, it’s gonna be a grind if they’re going to stay in this fight. A “grindddd,” perhaps, if Brett Lawrie was still here. But, of course, he’s now on the DL with a fractured finger.
The White Sox then a very good Brewers team are next, followed by trip to Oakland, Anaheim, and the house of horrors in Tampa before we go into the All-Star break. The season won’t be made or broken here in the next three weeks, but a replay of their awful last two-ish — with eleven losses in 15 games — could go a long way towards the latter. Yes, somewhere in the incoherent goo oozing forth from out of their keyboards, the doomsayers have a tiny kernel sense: the Jays can’t keep playing like they have. It’s just… y’know… it’s as dumb to believe that they will as it was to have believed they’d always play like they did in May, or that the ghosts of 2013 will surely haunt us, as if the team isn’t stronger in the rotation, stronger in defence, stronger in left field and at catcher, and — even counting the recent troubles with injuries — better health. Oh, and… uh… not to mention that they’re in a ridiculously better position, too.
It’s gonna be a fun ride. Now let’s see what these guys can do! A little bit of adversity never hurt anyone. And a chance to watch Marcus Stroman tonight? Sold! Go Jays!
Sticking with the injury stuff, the Jays announced earlier today that Lawrie is officially on the DL, and also that Erik Kratz has been optioned back to Buffalo, with Kevin Pillar and Anthony Gose both being recalled.
Chris Toman tweets that John Gibbons says the doctors figure Lawrie will be out three-to-six weeks. “Doctors here will check him out and we’ll get a little better idea on that,” he said, referring to the club’s doctors here in Toronto.
This latest bout of injury news is not all bad, though. In fact, “we lucked out,” says Gibbers according to a tweet from Mike Wilner, regarding Jose Bautista’s MRI results. The slugger has a “mild” strain, and hopes to only miss two or three days. There are no plans as yet to place him on the DL.
It’s not out of the question that Bautista could land on the DL, though. Wilner tweets that Jose “wouldn’t say for sure that he’d be back in 2-3 days, but hopes he can play at some point in this series.” John Lott quotes him as saying “there’s a really good chance I can avoid this, yes.”
Brendan Kennedy tweets that Jose says there’s a pretty good chance he could pinch hit at some point in this series if needed.
In Jose’s absence, Shi Davidi tweets that the club intends on platooning Gose and Pillar in right field — at which point, he adds, one will be sent back down. The club will also continue with Kawasaki and Tolleson platooning at second, and Francisco manning third (though he’ll occasionally be spelled by Tolleson as well).
Asked if it wouldn’t be a better option to have Gose play centre on the days in which he’s in the lineup, I explained it thusly: “Tactically, yes. Politically, no. I’d lean towards tactics, but I get it.” Right?
Aaaaand more injury stuff: John Lott tweets that Adam Lind says it will be “a little while” before the foot he fouled a ball off of last week will be fully healed, but it turns out he’s a trooper. Lind will DH and bat third tonight. “Playing doesn’t help,” he tells Lott, but at this point he has no choice.
Better news: Jose Reyes is in the lineup and says, according to another Lott tweet, that his leg is “nothing to worry about.”
Moving on, Bautista tweets that he’s been chosen as the AL’s captain for the Home Run Derby at the All-Star Game, and requests help from fans in selecting his fellow participants (*COUGH* Edwin *COUGH*).
And lastly — and bestly — Jose has a message all those doubters out there in Blue Jay Land, via a Mike Wilner tweet: “If they want to root for the Yankees or Red Sox, be my guest. They shouldn’t be Jays fans.”
Next game(s): Tomorrow, 7:07 PM ET vs. Yankees
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 Adam Lind (L)
1B Edwin Encarnacion (R)
CF Colby Rasmus (L)
C Dioner Navarro (S)
3B Juan Francisco (L)
2B Munenori Kawasaki (L)
RF Anthony Gose (L)
RHP Marcus Stroman
New York Yankees
LF Brett Gardner (L)
DH Carlos Beltran (S)
CF Jacoby Ellsbury (L)
1B Mark Teixeira (S)
C Brian McCann (L)
3B Kelly Johnson (L)
2B Brian Roberts (S)
RF Ichiro! (L)
SS Brendan Ryan (R)
RHP Chase Whitley