The Blue Jays and Tigers (sort of) played a baseball game today. Things were going very well for the Jays, as their hitters had an easy time with Justin Zimmermann and their pitchers combined to mow down the Tigers lineup, but with one out in the ninth inning, lefty T.J. House was drilled in the head with a line drive.
The game wasn’t on TV, so we could only go off of Mike Wilner’s description of the incident, but apparently House was hit hard, the sound was very loud, and the ball blasted straight up in the air after hitting him. House laid on the ground, half on the mound half off of it, faced down for just under twenty minutes before he was taken into an ambulance on a stretcher.
Wilner said that House raised his arm and gave the crowd a thumbs up as he was carted off to applauds from the crowd in what was a very chilling, sobering moment. The game was called after House was taken off the field, rightfully.
- Save for what happened to House, of course, this was an excellent game for the Jays, who move to 4-8 on the spring and have won back-to-back games for the first time in 2017.
- Casey Lawrence got the start, and was excellent yet again. He tossed three innings, scattering two hits and two walks while striking out four. He’s up to eight innings pitched with a minuscule 1.13 earned run average on the spring. I don’t think he was on anybody’s radar coming into 2017, but he’s probably worked his way into a discussion for a role as the team’s long-man out of the ‘pen.
- Aaron Loup, Bo Schultz, Mike Bolsinger, and Matt Dermody, all of whom are competing for depth bullpen roles, combined to throw four clean innings, while Ryan Tepera gave up the only runs of the game on a two-run home run from Justin Upton in the sixth inning.
- Jon Berti and Jake Elmore were the stars of the day offensively, as both had a couple of hits and an RBI, and Juan Graterol, who received praise from Wilner during the game for being excellent behind the plate, clubbed a solo home run.
- Justin Smoak only struck out once in two at bats. Yay?
- Steve Pearce, on the other hand, hit a double and took a walk in four plate appearances, furthering his claim to be the Jays every day first baseman this season.
- The impressive part is that the team exploded for five runs in one-and-one-third innings against a real Major League starting pitcher in Justin Zimmermann. I know it’s spring, but it’s good to see your depth, Triple-A call-up type players producing with the stick against somebody with some credibility.