Never in doubt.
Well, that wasn’t really the case in the ninth inning, but that’s certainly how it felt as Kevin Gausman cruised through the Boston Red Sox order.
With Teoscar Hernandez and Danny Jansen on the self, George Springer banged up, and Alejandro Kirk in need of a day off, the Blue Jays had a very thin lineup and badly needed a big pitching performance, and that’s exactly what Gausman gave the team as he put up an ace-like start, one of the best we’ve seen be a Blue Jay in years.
The score was 3-2 for the Blue Jays as they take the rubber match and their first series of the season with the Red Sox.

Things worth mentioning… 

  • Gausman has been getting better each start. In his first outing against Texas, he allowed quite a bit of contact, ultimately going five innings and scattering three earned runs on eight hits. Against the Yankees in his second outings, Gausman was sharper, as he went five-and-two-thirds, allowing two earned runs on six hits while striking out nine. This start, which was Gausman’s third as a Blue Jay, was simply dominant. Though Gausman did scatter seven hits over his eight-plus innings of work, none of the contact was very hard and it never felt like he was really ever in any trouble. Gausman also struck out eight batters, completely fooling Boston’s hitters with his splitter.
  • The controversy in this game was when Gausman went out for the ninth inning with a shutout, allowed a leadoff single on his first pitch, and was then immediately pulled in favour of Jordan Romano, who managed to earn an uncomfortable save but allowed Gausman’s runner to score plus a run of his own. There’s logic behind not wanting the middle of the lineup Sox to see Gausman but he was only at 88 pitches. Beyond that, Romano has been leaned on heavily this season, as he’s pitched in seven of Toronto’s 13 games. Giving Gausman the chance to complete the shutout is one thing, but this looked like a chance to have a Romano-free game, which would be ideal because we don’t want his arm to fall off in June.
  • It’s been a long time since the Blue Jays last had a complete game shutout. You have to go all the way back to June of 2015 when Mark Buehrle shut out the Nationals in an 8-0 win. That game came right after the Team Nap that kicked off an 11-game winning streak. That feels like a lifetime ago!

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