Late night baseball with home field advantage in a playoff race! Does it get much better than this?

Well… maybe if this generation’s Roy Halladay wasn’t on the mound for the Jays’ opponents, in the midst of the best season of his career. Or if the Jays’ two big bats, hopeful of making a return in this series, were quite ready.

They’re close, though. Edwin Encarnacion will play tomorrow for Buffalo in a rehab game, due to some bad weather in Florida that’s caused havoc with his assignment, while Adam Lind is currently travelling to Seattle, with the expectation that he’ll be activated tomorrow.

By the looks of the image above from @TSNScottyMac the Jays fans on the west coast are sure doing their part — this was 90 minutes before the first pitch! — which should make for a hell of an atmosphere tonight.

Let’s do it!


It’s not an injury, relax — or so he said, according to a Barry Davis tweet — but Jose Reyes has been given the day off. Commence freaking out about it anyway, or raging that John Gibbons would dare sit one of the club’s best bats on a night when offence is going to be at such a premium. Try remembering that nobody plays 162, though, and that it’s really not a big deal. “He needs it,” says John Gibbons, according to a Scott MacArthur tweet.

The bullpen doesn’t have a lot of bullets tonight, tweets Gregor Chisholm, as only Casey Janssen, Aaron Loup, and Brad Mills are said to be available.

From around the American League: the Orioles have lost Manny Machado to a knee sprain, though there’s no word how long he’ll be out. Meanwhile, Justin Verlander of the Tigers exited a game today with a sore shoulder, while the Royals made a nice pickup in Josh Willingham, formerly of the Twins.

The Jays have averaged over 35,000 in attendance over their last 30 home games according to a tweet from Ben Nicholson-Smith. That’ll play.

Next game(s): Tomorrow, 10:10 PM ET @ Seattle

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 Munenori Kawasaki (L)
DH Melky Cabrera (S)
RF Jose Bautista (R)
CF Colby Rasmus (L)
DH Dioner Navarro (S)
1B Danny Valencia (R)
3B Juan Francisco (L)
2B Steve Tolleson (R)
LF Anthony Gose (L)

RHP Drew Hutchison

Seattle Mariners

CF Austin Jackson (R)
LF Dustin Ackley (L)
2B Robinson Cano (L)
DH Kendrys Morales (S)
3B Kyle Seager (L)
C Mike Zunino (R)
1B Logan Morrison (L)
RF Endy Chavez (L)
SS Brad Miller (L)

RHP Felix Hernandez

Comments (348)

  1. Hutchinson cancer research advo behind home. Good stuff.

  2. What the fuck was that? Unwritten rule! Unwritten rule!

  3. Lol. Even stoeten can hit mills

  4. They can still score 5 runs against Felix, right? RIGHT?

  5. Hey his aaa numbers are amazing remember! Hahahaha

  6. How bad does a lefty pitcher have to be to have lefty batters hit .500 against them? Yiikkess

  7. Brad Mills, cannon fodder.

  8. Lefties 12-24 against mills. That is awesome

  9. Yea I hope they let Mills pitch the whole game. Then mercifully end this man’s baseball career.

  10. Who’s better these days Romero or mills?

  11. grapefruit league in august

  12. I did call 10 runs against. I retract. It may be 12 or 14 or higher

  13. Jays need to just put on the forfeit at this point.

  14. What’s fastball rules. 10 after 5 6 after 6 for forfits? Can that come into play

  15. Holy Christmas. Brad Mills ladies andngentlemen. And I thought I was going settling in to a nice 2-1 grinder match!

  16. I wonder how long it will take him to get 6 more outs

  17. AA should crawl into a hole for calling up this garbage to pitch.

    • For claiming him? Sure. But he’s doing what he is here to do and honestly I can only chuckle at how terrible he has pitched

      Meanwhile Esmil Rogers has given up 1 run in his 9 Yankee innings because of course

  18. I think I’m just going to settle in and watch this Hernandez fellow pitch. He might turn out to be something…

  19. Well the good news of the night is that kc is now in first in the central so we don’t lose a game in the wc because Detroit got pumped tonight too and the yanks lost sooooo. There’s a plus

  20. I can’t wait to see Dickey Thon Jr. and Robert Osuna to mop this one up.
    AA is a genius.

  21. Hey buck, I didnt catch that. Are you saying this is an open air stadium with a roof?

    • I don’t understand. You mean, the roof moves over this baseball field? Like, sometimes it’s open and sometimes it’s closed?

      They should get to the bottom of this right after they puzzle out the “quality start” stat again…

  22. No Big deal. Lose to Felix…come back and win the next 2. Use Mills as fodder.

    You had to expect this after yesterdays game. Reyes will be back tomorrow, Lind and Eddie in a few days. Things are looking OK.

  23. Catcher comes to the mound to remind Mills that no one gives a fuck any more. Just throw the goddamn thing across the plate and someone is bound to fly out and put everyone out of their misery.

  24. Brad mills mopping this game up nicely

    • He may be dragging it out for maximum exposure, although I’d say he’s pretty well exposed for what he is right now.

  25. Brad Mills may not be the best pitcher, but he will go to bed tonight wealthier than any (most?) of us!

  26. Holy shit, did Mills win a contest to pitch for your favourite team when the game is out of reach?

  27. Mills has thrown 40 pitches and recorded one out. To get 6 more outs that would be 240 pitches. I kinda want to see it

  28. Christ McGowan warming. Fuck, mills just throw it over the fucking heart

  29. Ridiculously easy to score here..

  30. C’mon Mills, you know you want to smoke it!

  31. How bad must Austin Jackson feel?

  32. Mills tiring out the Seattle hitters. Might help for next two days.

  33. Can one of the infielders please just offer to pitch the last inning?! Don’t let them use McGowan or any other pitcher.

  34. Fransisco? Released 4 times? Whatever for?

  35. Colby Rasmus owns King Felix though, 7 for 10 lifetime.

  36. Dickey should kiss brad mills. Mills looks depressed. I would b too if I had to fly from buffalo- Seattle buffalo in 15 hours

  37. And the fucking ump has to squeeze Mills on top of everything else.

  38. Brad Mills takes Jr Jays Saturdays to another level. And AA is to blame for this shit. He should be canned for this shit! Paul? You there?

  39. Good job by Mills making it through the rest of the game. It was looking iffy there for a while that they might have to bring in someone else.

  40. Thank fuck that’s done.

  41. Reimold 8 strikeouts in row haha that fucking hurts

    • How did we let willingham get to kc?

      Claim the fucker at least and try to get him got nothing

      If minny doesn’t agree , then just let him go back and at least nobody else gets him

      He’s a much better hitter than judge reinhold

      And they each have injury problems but willingham hit over 30 bombs just two years ago

      But the money is there ?

      • Perhaps when he was put through waivers, kc was behind TO in the standings

      • everyone is so quick to judge the non moves.

        JW is hitting under .150 since coming off the DL. His power is way down and at the point reimold is easily a better hitter and fielder.

  42. Why would they even get McGowan loose. ?

    Freaking let a position player throw underhanded for an inning or two .

    This throttling is a blessing in disguise.

    Rested a bunch of position players and the pen

    What really would have hurt is losing a hotly contested game in extras

    I applaud this loss

  43. Never had a chance tonight. Seriously. Hopefully they bounce back in games 2-3. But fact of the matter is…they continue to lose ground. Baltimore just keeps winning and so does KC. Detroit has some fight left. Staff is too good.

  44. I expected this result also. Playing 19 innings and flying out to the west coast is a tough task. I understand Mills was needed because everyone was taxed, but please no more…..he sucks

  45. I’m not mad in the least, this was an off day practice game after Sunday.

    Though I was surprised to see Hutch get torched by a team with shit for offense.

    Time to take the last two of this thing dammit.

  46. As soon as I saw them giving Felix the low strike early, mixed in with the flight / 19 innings day before/ Reyes given day off – I knew the game was over… It was practically the lock of the year that we were going to lose this game

    Now we need a good effort the rest of the series

  47. Jonathon Niese cleared waivers. Last couple years he’s pitched 140+ innings with 3.4-3.7 era. 50% gb pitcher with avg 2.75 bb/9 and avg 6.5 k/9. Yes, he walks too many and has never pitched 180-200+ innings in Bigs, but he’s relatively young (27) and is locked up at $8M avg year with team options in 2017/2018 (both $500K buyouts). Morrow will not be picked up and who knows if 2015 will have Sanchez and Stroman in the rotation. If AA can work a deal like Pillar and Nolin it would be good insurance/depth.

    • Niese was a pretty hot commodity as recently as 2012 I believe.

      Could be an interesting guy to take a whirl on.

    • I really hope Pillar can get a second chance here soon, but we all know that raking in AAA doesn’t always mean much when they join the big club..See: Goins, Ryan

      • No, it def doesn’t MEAN they will hit in the Show. You still need to reward a guy if they deserve it.

        I dont actually think its terribly likeley Pillar will do well. But if a guy can completely tear up AAA and you still don’t promote him, why is he even in the system?

        He could probably be of value ifnused right…..that is, as a platoon with Kawa or Colby/Goes vs. LHP

      • PIllar with another HR last night, now has an 18 game hit streak in AAA

        • Measuring Pillar in AAA is a complete waste of time. Pitching in MLB is completely different and Pillar is an instant out at this level. Move on

          • what about comparing what Gose and PIllar have done in AAA?

          • Wait and see,They’ve been saying that about Pillar since high school.
            Like a lot of people before they’ve underestimated Pillar.

          • He’s never struggled at any level of the minors and has a .323 average and 132 wRC+ with good baserunning and defense across 1700 PA’s at five levels over the last four years.

            But you’ve determined he’s useless after 150 PA’s in the majors?

            • Not bad for a kid whose high school coach needed to pull favors to get him a shot at university ball because recruiters thought he wasn’t good enough.
              Then proceded to set records and prove them wrong.
              Then get ignored in the draft.
              Only to hit over 300 at every level they put him at, again waiting for him to fail.
              The fire burns deep in this one.

              • Where would you play Pillar though? I’m assuming Gose will get sent down for EE on Friday because with Lind and EE back there will not be any room for Tony against righty pitching anymore (unless they play Bau at 3B, which they won’t do).

                So the way I see it the only way there is room for Pillar would be if they dump Reimold and have Pillar be the 4th OF / Lind platoon partner at DH. Don’t see that happening either.

                Most likely scenario is that we see Kevin when rosters expand in September.

                • Yeah, that’s the scenerio most likely Sammy.
                  Pillar most likely is a Sept. callup ( if Gibby lets him) and next year is the 4th OF.
                  IF he keeps it up.
                  The other scenerio is that he’s trade bait in the off season.

                  • I should add,IMHO.

                    • I don’t get the sense that Gibby is going to hold a long-term grudge against KP. Comparing Gose and Pillar is an interesting look though. Of the traditional “five tools” in baseball, you could make the case that Gose – on a scale of 1 – 5 – rates a full 5 in speed, defensive ability, and throwing arm, and might be a

                    • 1 in hitting for average and hitting for power.

                      Whereas KP might not rank as a ’5′ at any tool, but probably does not have any ’1′s either.

                      It would be interesting to see what kind of numbers a Gose / KP platoon could put up – I get the feeling we will find out in 2015.

                    • I feel like Pillar could perhaps be another Reed Johnson-esque player, in time

                  • trade bait?

                    lol for what? because he’s raking in AAA?

                    he’s a throw in at best.

          • He’d do better then Gose or Rasmus vs. LHP likely.

            Nobody is saying he’s going to be a world beater.

            • Kevin Pillar .281 OBP .367 Slugging VS LHP in MLB

              tell me more robA

              • Colby Rasmus .176 OBP .306 Slugging VS LHP in MLB 2014
                Anthony Gose .190 OBP .238 Slugging VS LHP in MLB 2014

                • shit, those were BA not OBP, my bad

                  • but pillar still does have 50pts on Colby’s OPS and 150 on Gose’s vs LHP

                    • the difference is that Gose and Rasmus can hit righties and play elite defense.

                      Where as pillar is an average defender and is completely dismal against RHP and even again LHP it isn’t enough to justify taking a step back defensively.

    • I would love to see us trade for Niese. Pretty dependable guy, locked down for a good price going forward. Would be a really niese addition.

  48. I went to bed with the Jays leading 1-0, and I’ll just work under the illusion that’s how the game finished.

  49. It’s pretty clear that Hutch needs more than regular rest to pitch well, at least at this point in his career.

    I would think that Dickey and Buehrle could either pitch on short rest or you could give Redmond or someone a few spot starts to make sure Hutch only pitches on 6 days.

    We are basically just rolling over starting Drew at his regular slot.

    • Quite a few off days coming up that will help. His next 4 starts he’ll be on at least 1 extra days rest.

    • The off-days in August will help, but I could see someone like Nolin getting a one-off start at some point to keep everyone rested. I wouldn’t have even considered this a possibility even a couple months ago, but Norris probably isn’t all that far off from a cup of coffee at this point either.

  50. 11-1? Big deal.

    Remember when Boston won 14-4? Didn’t really matter for the rest of that series.

    I didn’t get to see the game last night, were Jays fans out in full force?

    • *14-1.

      The other thing the game last night and the throttling in Boston have in common is Hutch started both and Mills came on in relief each time to give up bunches more runs.

    • As usual in Seattle,Jays fans in full force.Pics from 90 minutes before game time showed a sea of Jays blue.
      Feel bad for the couple that were sitting in the middle of “Kings Court” wearing their Jays shirts.They didn’t look happy.

  51. Every team has a guy that acts as pavement for the rest of the team to drive on. That’s how they keep moving. Thank goodness for Brad Mills.

  52. Really shitty that Wagner could need Tommy John.

    Was becoming increasingly likely he would have a tough time getting back into the bullpen this year anyway, at least until September call ups.

    Jays seem to have a plethora of bullpen arms anyway, but I did like Wagner

    • Wagner has only been on the MLB radar because of santos and delabar’s general shittiness.

      hopefully one of those guys, or even drabek can put a nice month together and move back up and help the team in late innings.

      • Yea I liked him but he’s expendable for sure.

        Drabek, Nolin, maybe even Norris available for some relief roles in September. Korecky another arm that could get tossed out there if/when he fades away.

        Not sure the status on Carreno or L Perez, both those guys were good relievers.

        Im sure there are a few more arms in the minors that could come up

        • I’m pretty sure Carreno and Perez are both not in the jays system anymore.

          I seem to remember Perez going to the braves, cant remember where carreno is though

  53. Also I’m not sure I saw any post this yet but Elliot said something about the Jays being given the greenlight to add up to 10 million in payroll this month (via waiver deadline)

    • Hmm…but who? WHO?

      • Way I see it is they have 2 weeks and the options are limited, particularly to these parameters:

        -a shitty contract
        -an underperforming player
        -a 2014/15 free agent
        -player on non contending team

        AA is not fond of picking up shitty contracts so that would be unlikely. Elliot only said 10 mil payroll THIS year, so theoretically they could add a player who is making that amount or less this year but is salaried for future years

        Underperforming players are a gamble and the worthwhile risks seem to have been plucked in July – Headley, Prado, etc. I for one do not want Aaron Hill nor can I envision him coming back (as an example)

        Most free agents were also dealt at the deadline but there are few pieces out there still. Someone like Kyle Kendrick. Really hard to tell what would make sense for the Jays though. Willingham would have been awesome.

        And lastly, the group on non contenders has dwindled. Really only the Phillies didn’t unload at the deadline and if anything, there are now MORE contenders as the Royals and M’s make serious pushes and the Yanks, Marlins and Mets are still kicking around.

        Let the speculation begin!

        • Dildo, I say we make our speculation as wild and uninformed as possible.


    • Dilbo I did not read that Elliott comment as him reporting that AA has received the green light to add payroll. It was more of a “Hey, who knows, maybe they (Rogers) could change their mind and approve a $10m spend next week. Even if they do so, it might already be too late”. So I don’t think Bob is taking back his “no more payroll allowed” assertion here.

  54. The real question about adding a starter is, who gets demoted?

    It won’t be Dickey. Sure he’s had bad games here and there, but he’s still pitching a 3.99 ERA.
    It won’t be Stroman… right? Stroman’s our best pitcher.
    Buehrle? While he’s pitched to a 6.09 ERA since July 1, it would take some serious balls to bench Buehrle, given his presence as a veteran, and especially when he’s still got a 3.31 ERA overall thanks to his awesomeness in the first half of the season.
    Happ? Happ has been red hot this month, pitching to a 1.80 ERA in two starts. When Happ goes back to being Happ, yeah, maybe. But his 4.09 ERA overall isn’t that bad.
    Which leaves Drew Hutchison, who has been wildly inconsistent from start to start lately. I’m not sure you can find an upgrade on the market, however, who is that much better than Hutchison. Not to mention you’ll need the space in the rotation next year for Norris et al.

    • has to be hutch I would think.

      I’d put him in the pen, I just think coming off TJ they should save his arm.

      Remember what the nats did with strasburg last year?

    • I’ve always thought Hutch’s arm would be preserved if another starter was brought in. That plus the plethora of off days this month would be a very good thing.

  55. I can think of more pitchers available than I can think of position players

    I would love to see a bullpen arm like Bastardo added.

    In terms of position players, only free agents I could think of were:

    -Chris Young (recently DFA’d I think)
    -Grady Sizemore

    Pretty sure Cuddy is still on the DL. Cant see Dunn coming here nor wanting to come. Sizemore isn’t really a big add IMO. Young would be more of AA’s style, while Rios is obviously the big name but doesnt fit their needs as much being a RF plus his lack of pop this year.

    The sky is the limit for the following year however. Zobrist is making 7.5 mil plus whatever he’s making this year . . . thats right around 10 mil, but AA would have to actually give up something of value then

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