Blue Jays complete season sweep of the White Sox with doubleheader victories

Photo credit:© Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports
Evan Stack
2 months ago
Doubleheaders are exhausting, but they are well worth it if you can win both games. That’s what the Jays did today against the White Sox, thereby sweeping the doubleheader, the series, and the season series against Chicago.

Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Whit Merrifield

That’s All-Star Whit Merrifield to you. Merrifield was 2-for-4 with two home runs, his first multi-home run game since last September against the Rays. Merrifield’s home runs either tied the game or gave the Blue Jays the lead, and he raised his batting average to .284, second-best on the team.

Things worth mentioning

It wasn’t Yusei Kikuchi’s worst start, but it also wasn’t his best. Although not walking a batter tonight and starting the game out strong, breaking pitches left hanging over the plate and hard-hit balls finally caught up to him. He allowed three consecutive hits to start the third inning, with Tim Anderson putting the ChiSox on the board with an RBI single. Later in the inning, Kikuchi surrendered an opposite-field two-run homer to Eloy Jimenez, and the White Sox led 3-1.
Kikuchi allowed a leadoff double to come around to score in the 5th inning, and his night was done after getting out of that frame. His final line: 5 IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, 4 K’s. He had eight balls hit over 96 mph on the night, with half of those being over 100 mph.
Fortunately for Yusei, the offence had some carryover from their 11th-inning burst earlier today. The team had 16 hits and pushed across five runs, just enough to get the job done. Aside from Merrifield’s multi-homer game, Bo Bichette (4-for-5), Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (2-for-5, 2 RBIs), and Matt Chapman (2-for-4, HR, 2B) stood out offensively. Chapman’s solo home run and Guerrero’s first RBI evened the score at 3, giving way for Merrifield to put the Jays back ahead in the 6th inning.
Danny Jansen and Cavan Biggio, the No. 7 and 8 hitters in tonight’s lineup, also had two hits apiece, all coming consecutively and with two outs. Unfortunately, Santiago Espinal wasn’t able to push any of them across home plate, but some production from the bottom of the order was a welcome sight. While the win provided good vibes, Toronto still left several opportunities on the table. Chapman and Guerrero Jr. both ran into outs on the base paths, and the team was 1-for-7 with RISP.
Three bullpen arms combined for four scoreless innings of work, with Jay Jackson earning his first win of the season. Tim Mayza struck out three of the four batters he retired, and Nate Pearson closed the door recording the final four outs of the game.
By sweeping today’s doubleheader, the Blue Jays gained 1.5 games on the Yankees and the Astros. In doing so, they are tied for the final Wild Card spot and only one game back of the second WC spot. Furthermore, they gained a full game on the Rays and are now only eight games back in the AL East. While that does seem out of reach, the Rays have a series with the Braves on the horizon while the Jays face the Tigers before the All-Star break.
What’s Next: The Jays will start a series tomorrow night against the Detroit Tigers with Alek Manoah making a much-anticipated start tomorrow evening; it’s his first start since early June against the Astros. The Blue Jays took two of three from Detroit back in April in Toronto.


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