The Jays missed a chance to sweep the Trash Birds, but they still put a major dent in Baltimore’s playoff aspirations with a couple of wins during this three-game series in Toronto. We got to see some nice pitching performances and some clutch hits from the new kids. I’ll say that’s a successful week of early spring training.
On Monday, the Jays smacked some runs off of Ublado Jimenez, because, well, of course. Marco Estrada was strong for five innings, them the bullpen came in and slammed the door. 4-3 Blue Jays.
On Tuesday, Joe Biagini pitched the best game of his career, holding the O’s to two runs over eight strong innings. Dylan Bundy got some damn good luck, as the Jays flew out to the warning track five times over two innings. In the ninth, the Jays rallied off of Zach Britton (LOLOL) and Richard Urena smacked a walk-off single. 3-2 Blue Jays.
On Wednesday, the O’s scored two runs thanks to a Josh Donaldson error, and that’s all they would get all game. The Jays pitched nine innings without giving up an earned run, but the bats could only sneak one run across. 2-1 Orioles.
Things that were good
- The new kids put on a great show this week. Richard Urena smacked that walk-off single in the ninth inning on Tuesday’s game off of Zach Britton and went 5-for-13 for the series. He flashed a nice glove on defence too, and hasn’t looked out of place at all this month. Tesocar Hernandez also had a nice week with the bat, going 4-for-10 over the three-game series. We all know never to get too hyped off of September performances because they’re essentially just like spring, but still, the kids have made the final month of this disaster season watchable.
- Joe Biagini had a very good start against the O’s last week, and this week, he topped it with an even better start. Biagini went eight innings, scattering two runs on six hits without surrendering a walk. It was the longest outing of his career, and he looked incredibly poised and efficient. In times when Biagini has struggled, his delivery has looked wonky and unbalanced, but Tuesday, he was in command and his pitches showed it.
- Marcus Stroman and Marco Estrada both had strong starts. Stroman is putting together a case for some Cy Young votes while Estrada auditions to be one of the free agents the Jays front office brings in to solidify the rotation next season. I hope he comes back.
The Jays will pack up and head to Minnesota to take on the Twins, who are hot in pursuit of the second wild card. It’ll be a four-game weekend series, and after that, they’ll have Monday off before coming home to play Kansas City.