Instant Reaction: Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Blue Jays snap seven-game losing skid with a 9-4 win over Boston

Photo credit:© Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports
Evan Stack
23 days ago
You can slander the season, the offensive struggles, the decision-making, and so much more. But, you can’t slander the Blue Jays for putting yesterday behind them.
Backed heavily by a seven-run 2nd inning and a 5-for-8 performance with RISP, Toronto snapped a seven-game losing streak by defeating Boston 9-4 on Tuesday night. In ending that losing streak, the Blue Jays avoided matching their longest losing skid since they lost eight consecutive games in May of 2009.
Toronto sent Kevin Gausman to the mound tonight to make his 16th start of the season and his second consecutive one against Boston. After a three-up-three-down first inning, Gausman allowed a solo home run to Rafael Devers to lead off the second inning and put the Jays in an early 1-0 hole.
A defensive disaster ensued after the homer, as a Tyler O’Neill pop-up into shallow right field was misplayed between Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and George Springer. As soon as the ball was hit in the air, Guerrero began to back peddle into right field, so much so that he arguably entered Springer’s area of the field. Guerrero muffed the catch, O’Neill ultimately reached third, and he would score on a Masataka Yoshida double one batter later.
Although the Blue Jays have been known to do a lot of damage in second innings this season, they went off in the third inning tonight (with the help of some lacklustre Red Sox defence) against Boston starter Brayan Bello. Danny Jansen and Isiah Kiner-Falefa led off the frame with a double and a bunt single, respectively. Kevin Kiermaier grounded a single under the glove of second baseman Enmanuel Valdez and into right field, scoring Jansen, but a Hail Mary-esque throw from right fielder Wilyer Abreu landed above the Toronto dugout, and Kiner-Falefa would score as well to even the score at 2.
Back-t0-back walks by Bo Bichette and Spencer Horwitz loaded the bases with no one out for Guerrero Jr., who entered the game with good career numbers against Bello. Vladdy continued his success against him with a two-run double that narrowly missed going over the short wall in right centre field, and the Blue Jays extended their lead to 4-2.
After an RBI groundout from Justin Turner, a slumping Springer lofted a ball into right centre field and over the fence for a two-run home run. Off the bat, it appeared to many – including Springer and the Sportsnet broadcast booth – that it may not have had enough to leave the yard, but the ball had some carry on it. It was a sight for sore eyes to Springer and his teammates; that was his first home run since June 4th, and with a pair of singles later in the game, tonight marked his first multi-hit performance since June 3rd.
Leading by five runs was great, but Guerrero Jr. padded the lead in the top of the 4th inning with his second two-run double of the night. This hit, though, was a little abnormal, as Guerrero Jr. drilled a ball 102 mph in the dirt right in front of home plate, but it still bounced over the head of Devers at third base.
Gausman allowed a two-run missile to O’Neill in the bottom of the 6th to cut the lead to five, but he finished the frame without any further damage to complete his night. In total, Gausman pitched six innings allowing five hits, four runs (three earned), one walk, and five strikeouts. Brendon Little, Trevor Richards, and Chad Green would follow Gausman and pitch three hitless innings in relief to secure the win.

Other News & Notes:

  • Although dropping down to the 8th in the batting order, Kiner-Falefa posted a 1-for-4 stat line, bringing his current hit streak to 10 consecutive games.
  • Taking his spot at leadoff was Bichette, who returned from the 10-day IL (calf) and made his first start since June 14th. Bichette went 0-for-4 with a walk, a run, and two strikeouts.
  • Horwitz was 0-for-2 with a pair of walks, a pair of runs, and a HBP. Despite not recording a hit, he has still reached base safely in all 13 games that he has started.
  • Red Sox CF Jarren Duran went 0-for-5 tonight, ending a 14-game hit streak that started back on June 9th.
  • Kiermaier had three hits on the night, marking his first multi-hit game since May 8th in Philadelphia.
  • With a 2-for-5 night, Vladdy now has six extra-base hits in his last five games.
What’s Next: The Blue Jays will send Yariel Rodriguez to the bump tomorrow night with hopes of winning the series. Toronto will face Kutter Crawford, who has sputtered a bit since a fabulous March & April.

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