Failing to play spoiler to the Red Sox, the Blue Jays changed their targets to the Orioles, and oh boy did they ever. Specifically Kendrys Morales. A poor outing from Estrada didn’t slow the Jays down, with Morales stepping up with the home-run hat trick.
Despite falling behind early the Jays rode their offense back into the lead, including the noted contribution from Morales, and a monster inning in the top of the fifth that included big contributions from Miguel Montero and Kevin Pillar.
It wouldn’t be the 2017 season however without a little bit of uneasiness, so Ryan Tepera volunteered that up in the eighth. After allowing the Orioles to get the tying run to the plate, Osuna would come in and shut the door with a four out save, earning the Jays what has become such a rarity of late, a victory. It may not mean much for the Jays, but damn it feels good to crap all over the Orioles.
Meaningful baseball in September? Maybe not! But throwing a wrench in the Trash Birds' playoff run is a nice consolation prize.
— Blue Jays Nation (@thejaysnation) September 1, 2017
Starting Pitchers Lines:
Marco Estrada (W): 5 IP 10 H 6 R 6 ER 1 BB 4 SO
Jeremy Hellickson (L): 4.2 IP 7 H 7 R 7 ER 4 BB 2 SO
Well. This one is pretty straight forward. With the next highest player coming in a full 25 points back, Kendrys Morales and his hat trick led the way. The triple taters vaulted Kendrys to a phenomenal 46.3% win probability added. Morales put the team on his back last night and carried them on to victory.
With the bats showing up in spades last night, the Jeers ended up landing on a pitcher. Despite getting the win, Marco Estrada put forward a terrible WPA of -36.1%. Geeze, it’s almost as though pitcher wins are a hollow statistic… Anyway, moving on.
With Morales leading the way with his incredible number, the rest of the bats followed suit. Only two players contributed a worse than negative four percent chance and none exceeded-11%. The sticks combined for a striking 75.3% probability added. More outings like that and it won’t matter who the Jays toss out there to chuck.
The pitching wasn’t nearly as on point as the bats, actually combining for a -25.3% WPA. With Estrada putting the arms back early on his jeers-worthy performance, the pen didn’t really have a chance to pull them up to positive numbers. Even with a -6.3% outing from Tepera positive contributions from Leone, Barnes, and Osuna did make the number more respectable (I guess…)
Highest Leverage At Bat:
The highest leverage at bat for the Jays came in the middle of the fifth. Miguel Montero stepped up to the plate to face Jeremy Hellickson with two out and the bases loaded. With the Jays down 5-3 at the time, they needed runs bad, and this was a prime opportunity to take advantage. This high-intensity situation registered at an impressive 3.74 LI and Montero was up to the challenge. Montero ripped a liner to right scoring Donaldson and Morales and tieing the game.
Highest Leverage Opponent At Bat:
The Orioles started to mount themselves a bit of a comeback in the 8th, and as a result, would see their highest leverage at bat arise there. With Tepera struggling to shut the door, Osuna was called in to navigate his way to a four out save. Osuna would face Adam Jones, and following a passed ball, would do so with runners on second and third. Down by three and representing the tieing run, Jones faced a leverage index of 2.23. Jones fell flat on his face, grounding out to second to end the inning.
Highest Impact At Bat:
When you hit three bombs in one game, chances are one of those bad boys is going to hold a pretty heavy impact, and that’s exactly what happened last night. Morales’ second home run of the night would prove to be the highest impact at bat for the Jays. In the top of the sixth, Morales faced Givens with two outs and Pearce and Donaldson on base. The Jays currently held a slim lead at 7-6, but the blast from Morales’ increased the Jays lead to 10-6, and also increased their chances of a win by 25.5%.
Highest Impact Opponent At Bat:
It didn’t take long for the Orioles to have their biggest impact at bat, occurring in the bottom of the first. With two outs and Manny Machado hanging out at third Adam Jones stepped in to face Marco Estrada. Estrada, who has been on as of late, was definitely not last night, and it showed here. Jones would take Estrada deep, giving the Orioles an early two run lead and increasing their probability of a win by 16.7%.
Game two goes today against the Orioles with Biagini on the bump. What’s better than playing spoiler? Playing spoiler against trash, so fuck the shit-birds and Go Jays!
(h/t to fangraphs.com for WPA chart and statistics)