Photo Credit: Kevin Sousa/USA TODAY Sports via Reuters

Blue Jays stumble to All-Star break after rough showing against Baltimore

Though the Baltimore Orioles were (and are) hardly a worthy opponent for most teams of any significance, the Blue Jays still dropped their final series before the All-Star break against Brandon Hyde’s lowly O’s. With stingy starting pitching and consistent hitting, the Orioles (27-62) were able to claw their way to a rather shocking series victory against the Blue Jays at home.

Here’s a look at the good, the bad, and the weird of the first half of the season’s final series:

The Good

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Continuing his hot streak, Danny Jansen (3-for-11, 3B, RBI) was electric at the plate, with Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (2-for-7, BB, HR, 2 RBI, SB) following suit with a great stretch of his own. Brandon Drury (1-for-5, HR, RBI) hit a home run, while Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (3-for-10, 3 R, BB) rebounded nicely.

On the mound, Trent Thornton (6.0 IP, 3 H, 0 BB, 5 SO, W) was excellent in the finale, with relievers Daniel Hudson (1.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R/ER), Tim Mayza (1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R/ER), and Sam Gaviglio (3.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R/ER, 4 SO) also tossing solid frames in relief.

The Bad

Justin Smoak (0-for-9, R, 2 BB, 4 SO) and Freddy Galvis (2-for-11, R, 3B, 3 SO) had trouble at the plate, while Rowdy Tellez (1-for-7, RBI, 2B, 4 SO) also faltered, albeit in limited at-bats. Eric Sogard (0-for-8, 0 TB) couldn’t put things together either, causing his season’s slash to fall to .294/.364/.478.

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On the mound, Aaron Sanchez (5.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R/ER, 4 BB, 5 SO) was unable to find his groove, while relievers David Phelps (1.0 IP, H, R/ER, BB) and Nick Kingham (2.2 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 2 BB) were roughed up throughout the set. Joe Biagini (1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R/ER, BB) staggered as well, raising his season ERA to 4.05.

The Weird

During Sunday’s third game, it was revealed by Buck Martinez on the Sportsnet broadcast (and numerous other baseball reporters around the league) that Brewers outfielder Christian Yelich will not be participating in the 2019 Home Run Derby, where he was scheduled to face off against Guerrero Jr. in the first round, due to injury. Instead, Oakland Athletics slugger Matt Chapman (21 HR, 52 RBI, .265/.353/.534) will battle Vlad in the derby’s opening round.

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Looking Ahead

Following the All-Star break, the Blue Jays (now 34-57) will travel to New York on Friday, July 12th to battle the 57-30 New York Yankees. While no probables have been announced, one can assume that some combination of Aaron Sanchez (3-12, 6.16 ERA, 77 SO), Marcus Stroman (5-9, 3.18 ERA, 81 SO), and Trent Thornton (3-6, 4.85 ERA, 97 SO) will go for the Blue Jays, with Masahiro Tanaka (5-5, 3.86 ERA, 90 SO),  J.A. Happ (7-4, 5.02 ERA, 71 SO), and James Paxton (5-3, 4.09 ERA, 84 SO) potentially starting for New York.