This week, the Blue Jays paid homage to Josh Donaldson in a heartfelt tribute video played at Rogers Centre prior to the first game of a mini-set between the boys in blue and Atlanta Braves this week. Though somewhat uneventful and rather cleanly played (in general), the Blue Jays split the series with the NL East division leaders, capitalizing on key offensive opportunities and using some excellent relief pitching to their advantage.
Here’s a look at the good, the bad, and the weird from this week’s Braves-Blue Jays series:
Cavan Biggio (3-for-7, 2 R, 2B, 2 BB), Brandon Drury (1-for-3, RBI), and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (4-for-9, 2 RBI) were all productive, with Justin Smoak (3-for-6, 2 R, HR, 2 RBI, 2 BB) also contributing offensively.
On the mound, Wilmer Font (2.0 IP, H, 0 R/ER, 4 SO), Sam Gaviglio (2.2 IP, H, 0 R/ER, 4 SO), Ken Giles (1.0 IP, H, 0 R/ER, 2 SO, SV), and Zack Godley (3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R/ER, 2 SO, W) were all solid, while Tim Mayza (0.2 IP, H, 0 R/ER) also had a good outing in relief.
Bo Bichette (2-for-9, R, 3 SO), Derek Fisher (0-for-3, SO), Teoscar Hernandez (1-for-5, R, 3 SO), and Billy McKinney (0-for-3, 0 TB) all struggled, while Rowdy Tellez (1-for-8, BB, SO) was equally hapless at the dish.
Jason Adam (0.2 IP, 0 H, 3 R/ER, 2 BB), Buddy Boshers (1.0 IP, 2 H, R/ER, BB), and Jordan Romano (0.2 IP, H, R/ER, BB, SO) were roughed up out of the pen, while Jacob Waguespack (3.0 IP, 6 H, 5 R/ER, 2 BB, 2 SO, L) also didn’t fare too excellently in his start during Wednesday’s finale.
Shortly after a rather impulsive Blue Jays fan prevented Vladimir Guerrero Jr. from catching a foul ball on Tuesday, a Braves fan on the opposite side of the field nearly prevented Billy McKinney from making a catch, attempting to thread the needle and make the catch before McKinney could get a glove on it. Fortunately for the Blue Jays and McKinney, the outfielder got there first, retiring Donaldson for the second out of the inning.
Continuing the trend of offensively sound teams, the Blue Jays will now welcome the Houston Astros (86-47) Friday to begin a three-game series that’ll feature Wade Miley (13-4, 3.13 ERA, 129 SO), Framber Valdez (4-6, 5.14 ERA, 53 SO), and Justin Verlander (16-5, 2.69 ERA, 243 SO) going up against Trent Thornton (4-8, 5.34 ERA, 117 SO) and Clay Buchholz (0-3, 5.87 ERA, 15 SO).
The Blue Jays have yet to announce a starter for Sunday’s finale, which will begin at 1:07 PM EDT at Rogers Centre.