What a gut punch.
That home run from Anthony Rizzo hurt. That home run from Aaron Judge stung. That two-run home run from Gleyber Torres fucking felt like having your heart ripped from your chest and stomped on the ground.
Long story short, the Yankees got the job done and the Blue Jays didn’t.
Toronto beat Gerrit Cole on Wednesday night in order to set themselves up to take this all-important three-game series against the Yankees with their ace taking the mound.
Robbie Ray was excellent for five innings but New York’s bats finally got to him their third time through the order. There was some thought that Charlie Montoyo should have pulled Ray after giving up the walk to Stanton or even after the homer to Judge, but, given how thin Toronto’s bullpen is, I can see why he opted to give the American League Cy Young favourite a chance to work through that sixth inning.
While Ray didn’t give Toronto the ace start they needed, the bats also failed to get the job done, scoring just two runs. There were plenty of situations in which the Blue Jays could have put together a rally and didn’t. Marcus Semien grounded into a double play after George Springer led the game off with a single, Corey Dickerson was left at second in the second and fourth inning, and Bo Bichette’s leadoff double in the ninth was stranded.
The opportunity was there for the Blue Jays to write a storybook ending to their season this week and now they’re on life support.
DIEHARD BALTIMORE ORIOLES FAN CLUB RISE UP! pic.twitter.com/kX6nlCFsrH
— Baltimore Orioles (@Orioles) October 1, 2021
The Orioles managed to play spoiler against the Red Sox this week, taking two of three in their series. This is hilarious but also somewhat depressing because it means that the Blue Jays could be in a playoff spot right now if they had managed to win two against New York.
Now the Yankees are pretty safely in the first wild-card spot with a 91-68 record, Boston and the Mariners are tied in the second spot with matching 89-70 records, and the Blue Jays are one game back of them with an 88-71 record.
The good news is that the Yankees are playing the Rays, who are the best team in the American League. The bad news is that the Rays have nothing to play for because they’ve already locked up the top seed in the playoffs and will likely prioritize resting players rather than beating the Yankees at this point.
Boston will travel to Washington to play the rotting husk of the Nationals, who have lost five of their last six games. The one positive here is that the game is in Washington, so Boston won’t have a designated hitter, which is kind of a pain in the ass for them. Finally, Seattle will host the Angels, a team they’ve gone 10-6 against this season.
The #BlueJays will go Matz-Manoah-Ryu in this final series of the weekend against the Orioles.
— Keegan Matheson (@KeeganMatheson) September 30, 2021
So, basically, Toronto needs to sweep the Orioles and they need help elsewhere.
Steven Matz, Alek Manoah, and Hyun Jin Ryu will be the Blue Jays’ starters this weekend and Jose Berrios will be available to pitch if he has to on Sunday.
Win all these goddamn games against the Trash Birds and hope for a miracle. The Blue Jays aren’t dead yet, but, oof, this sucks.