The losing streak has reached five games.
Remember when the Blue Jays won their first game of the Boston series earlier this week and then had a chance to get into first place in the American League East with another win? That feels like another lifetime. The team now has a 23-22 record.
Sunday’s game actually looked like a prime opportunity to end the skid. Hyun Jin Ryu took the mound and tossed a gem, allowing just a couple of earned runs over six-and-two-thirds innings. In the bottom of the eighth inning, Teoscar Hernandez reached on an infield single (which could have been scored an error) and then Randal Grichuk put the team up 4-2 with a bomb.
Charlie Montoyo opted to roll with Tyler Chatwood, who had allowed one earned run all season coming into the game, in the ninth inning to close things down.
And then everything went to hell.
Chatwood walked Ji-Man Choi and allowed Brandon Lowe to smack a single. He got Taylor Walls to ground out but then Brett Phillips made the score 4-3 with a single of his own. Chatwood then got Randy Arozarena to line out but then walked Yandy Diaz to load the bases.
At this point, Montoyo chose to pull Chatwood in favour of Travis Bergen, who couldn’t at all find the strike zone. Bergen walked the first three batters he faced and the Rays ran away with a 6-4 victory.
Ugly, ugly stuff.
What can you even say? That was a pretty bad outing from Chatwood and he clearly didn’t have his command but bringing in a middling reliever like Bergen into the situation seemed like quite the gamble from Charlie. I figure at this point you’re best off letting Chatwood, the guy who has been your best bullpen arm all season, have a chance to finish what he started, for better or worse.
Well, regardless, the Blue Jays will send Ross Stripling out on Monday to avoid the four-game sweep. Oh boy!