An emotional afternoon that saw the Toronto Blue Jays fire manager Charlie Montoyo culminated in the team pummeling the Philadelphia Phillies Wednesday night.
It was a move that caught many by surprise as Montoyo, an incredibly likable manager, fell on the sword for the Jays’ struggles.
What did the team do in response? Beat the wheels off the Phillies.
Ross Stripling turned in a tremendous seven innings for the Jays throwing 81 pitches — 57 of which were strikes — while allowing just two hits, and two runs as he fanned six batters. He kept the Jays in the game right off the opening pitch, and the Jays batters put in some work.
Ramiel Tapia brought in Matt Chapman in the 3rd, before Vladimir Guerreo Jr. smoked a one-handed dinger over the wall in the fourth. Teoscar Hernandez joined in on the fun hitting a two-run homer of his own, his first of the night, and thus began the runaway. Bo Bichette and Vladdy would bring in a few more runs, and the Phillies had no chance.
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Out of the bullpen, Tim Mayza threw a perfect eighth, before Trevor Richards struck out three batters to close it out in the ninth.
You could see a different bravado with the team. You could see the fact the Montoyo firing didn’t sit well with the players.
After all, it wasn’t really his fault. Say what you will of his struggles at times managing the bullpen, among other things, but there wasn’t ever one singualr thing that really pushed him out the door.
It was a collective failure, right up to the top where Ross Atkins himself took blame for the teams struggles. He’s tried some tweaks bringing in Sergio Romo and Anthony Banda to the bullpen, but neither of these guys are enough to help get the Jays where they want to be.
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In sports, the old adage is that the coach, or manager, often takes the fall for larger issues at hand. That’s what happened here in Toronto today and now, the pressure instantly shifts not only onto the players, but management, as well. Atkins and co. have a little over two weeks to make additions to bolster this roster.
John Schneider, who has been in the organization as long as anyone, gets a chance to prove his worth. There were some rumblings that other teams could’ve been looking to poach him, so it makes sense for the Jays to keep him in house as the interim manager to see what he can do.

Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at zach@oilersnation.com.
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