The Toronto Blue Jays and Cleveland baseball team played the rubber match of a three game series Sunday afternoon at Progressive Field. The first two games of the series were decided by one run and the final game turned out to be no different. Cleveland’s starter, Corey Kluber, and Jays hurler, Marcus Stroman, were locked into an old fashioned pitchers duel throughout.
Kluber’s final line was 6 2/3 innings, six hits, two runs, four walks and eight strikeouts and he left the game with the bases loaded in the seventh. However, Edwin Encarnacion struck out looking to end the inning. The Blue Jays missed opportunities to add to their lead in the eighth, leaving two more runners stranded, while overall stranding 11 for the game.
Stroman was only in one real jam in the game, in the sixth inning and he gave the Blue Jays exactly what they needed, going deep into the game to help a tired bullpen get some rest. He left the game in the eighth with a one run lead. Stroman’s final line was 7 1/3 innings, seven hits, one run, one walk and nine strikeouts. However, Toronto lefty Brett Cecil surrendered a two-run homer to give the Cleveland baseball team a 3-2 lead. The Blue Jays got two more runners on in the top of the ninth before Russell Martin lined out to right field to end the game.
TOP PLAY OF THE GAME BY WPA
Cecil, who entered the game with one out and the bases empty in the eighth, proceeded to get Jason Kipnis to line out. However, Francisco Lindor got on via an infield single and then Friday night’s hero did it again. Jose Ramirez clobbered a two-run home run to left field to give the Cleveland baseball team a 3-2 lead they never relinquished. This increased their win expectancy by 62.3 percentage points.
BOTTOM PLAY OF THE GAME BY WPA
Jose Ramirez came to the plate earlier in the game with runners at first and second and no one out. He proceeded to ground into a 6-4-3 double play and reduce the win expectancy by 18 percentage points. This play helped Stroman get out of the inning, preserving at that time a one run lead.
RETURN OF DONALDSON
After leaving the final game against the New York Yankees with a thumb injury, Josh Donaldson missed the first two games in Cleveland. He immediately had an impact by driving in Devon Travis with a two-out single in the top of the third. Donaldson went one for three with two walks.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MELVIN
Melvin Upton Jr. has started to become more comfortable at the plate for the Blue Jays. In his last 10 games prior to today, Upton is hitting .281 (9/32), with five runs scored, seven RBI and two home runs. On Sunday, he turned 32 and in his first at-bat hit his fourth home run as a Blue Jay. The Jays will need continued production from him as they await the return of Jose Bautista.
Upton Jr. heating up for the #BlueJays. That's his third homer in his last four games.
— Gregor Chisholm (@gregorMLB) August 21, 2016
The Toronto Blue Jays head home to start a six game series against two last place teams, the Los Angeles Angels and the Minnesota Twins. They will have an off day on Monday and send knuckleballer R.A. Dickey (8-13, 4.51) to the mound against the Angels on Tuesday. First pitch will be at 7:07 PM ET.
Lead Photo: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports