There are few things in this life that I enjoy more than the Red Sox losing. When those losses come at the hands of the Toronto Blue Jays, well, it’s all the better. So, you can imagine how I might feel about 7-6 extra inning walk off wins by the Toronto Blue Jays over the Boston Red Sox.
Anatomy Of A Jose Bautista At Bat
Jose Bautista led off the fifth inning with a solo home run hit off Jon Lester. Here’s how it went down:
- Bautista takes the first pitch, a four seam fastball, for strike one.
- Bautista swings and misses at a curve away to make the count 0-2.
- Bautista takes a four seam fastball high and away to make the count 1-2.
- Bautista fouls a cutter off his foot.
- Bautista takes a curve low and inside for ball two.
- Bautista fouls off a four seam fastball right down the middle of the plate.
- Bautista tries to pull a cutter inside but ends up fouling it off.
- Bautista powers a curve in the center of the plate over the wall in left field.
The home run tied the game. And it was good.
Other Blue Jays Home Runs:
J.P. Arencibia increased the Blue Jays chances of winning by 16.1% with his lead off home run in the sixth inning off Jon Lester to make the score 5-4.
David Cooper increased his team’s chances of winning by 25.4% by hitting a solo home run off of Daniel Bard, giving the Blue Jays a one run lead going into the ninth inning.
Most Important Play(s) Of The Game
By hitting a single, stealing second base and then stealing third base, Rajai Davis increased his team’s chance of winning by 22.5%. I’m often quick to criticize aggressive base running, but when it works (or when Jason Varitek is behind the plate), it’s both exciting and incredibly effective. David Cooper boosted those chances to 100% after hitting a sac fly to deep center that Davis scored on in the tenth inning.
Biggest Opportunity Missed
With runners on the corners and only one out, David Ortiz grounded into a 1-6-3 double play in the seventh inning.
The Aggravating Things That John Farrell Did
Calling for a squeeze bunt with Rajai Davis on third base and Yunel Escobar at the plate and only one out is questionable at best. It was made to look positively ridiculous when Escobar either missed the sign or had no chance of making contact on a pitch that was basically at his feet.
Farrell might be criticized for going to Frank Francisco in the ninth after Jon Rauch only faced a single batter in the eighth inning, but Francisco has better career numbers against left handed batters and with Adrian Gonzalez leading off, it made sense to go with him. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out that well.
The Statistics You Won’t Believe
John McDonald already has half the plate appearances that he had in all of last year.
Adrian Gonzalez has played two games at Rogers Centre. He has three home runs.
Coming into tonight the Blue Jays led the league in innings pitched by its bullpen with 119.1. Their starters have only pitched 194 innings.
Jon Rauch gets credit for a shutdown after his eight pitches of work, but Frank Francisco takes a meltdown after giving up Adrian Gonzalez’s second home run of the game.
Carlos Villanueva continues his impressive relief work, not only earning the win in tonight’s game, but also another shutdown.
Stray Observations Of The Game
I’m basically in shock every time Corey Patterson gets a hit. Strike that, I’m basically in shock every time Corey Patterson does anything good. Gunning down Carl Crawford at the plate in the top of the fourth is my personal highlight of his Blue Jays career.
While the home plate umpire was certainly squeezing him a little bit, Jon Lester’s reaction was beyond inappropriate after he walked Edwin Encarnacion to score the first runs of the game.
I’m not really sure why Brandon Morrow gets pulled in the fourth inning after three innings of looking great, while Kyle Drabek gets a much longer leash while looking shaky with every batter he faced.
Yunel Escobar took a pitch off the shin in the bottom of the sixth. He left the game. Immediately following the play, I had sympathy pains. It looked that bad.
Marc Rzepczynski had Dustin Pedroia picked off, but David Cooper dropped the ball. Only an amazing decoy play by John McDonald kept Pedroia from advancing to third base.
Was there some sort of hose underneath Alfredo Aceves’ hat? What was with the salty Niagara Falls flowing from his head?
J.P. Arencibia looked good behind the plate until allowing that split finger fastball from Frank Francisco to get by him.
I’m glad to see David Cooper have a good game, but I can’t shake the feeling that this call up has more to do with trade bait than anything else.