The Toronto Blue Jays and Tampa Bay Rays played game two of their three game series Saturday night at Tropicana Field, and the script was reminiscent of game one: Blue Jays score first, bats go silent, Jays pitchers have one bad inning, and the Jays add runs late but come up short.
Blake Snell threw a lot of pitches early in the game, but was able to grind out six innings against a Jays offence that couldn’t get much going. His final line was six innings, two hits, one run, two walks and seven strikeouts. The Blue Jays starter, Marco Estrada, was in complete control through five innings, but the wheels came off in the sixth. He couldn’t retire a batter and left the game down 5-1. Estrada’s final line was five innings, seven hits, five runs, two walks and six strikeouts.
The Rays would add on two more in the seventh and the Blue Jays would mount a comeback in the ninth scoring four runs but would fall just short. Tampa would win game two, 7-5.
TOP PLAY OF THE GAME BY WPA
After cruising through the first five innings, Marco Estrada couldn’t record an out in the sixth. After a bloop infield single by Bobby Wilson, followed by a sharp single by Jays killer Logan Forsythe and a bunt single by Kevin Kiermaier, the bases were loaded with none out. Evan Longoria singled to left to drive in a run that tied the game at one, and increased the win expectancy by 13 percentage points.
BOTTOM PLAY OF THE GAME BY WPA
In the top of the ninth and the Jays down 7-1 they would mount a comeback. Tampa reliever, Enny Romero, would enter the game and proceeded to walk four batters and give up a single while recording two outs, the Jays were within three. Alex Colome, the closer, would enter the game and give up an RBI single to Jose Bautista to bring the tying run to the plate. However, Edwin Encarnacion would flyout to end the game, it would reduce the Jays win expectancy by 6.8 percentage points and end the game.
BIAGINI FINALLY GIVES UP A HOME RUN
Joe Biagini, the Rule V pick from the San Francisco Giants, has been impressive for the Blue Jays all season in any role that manager John Gibbons has asked him to pitch. However, Rays outfielder Kiermaier hit a two-run homer off Biagini in the seventh to extend the Rays lead to 7-1. What was most notable about that home run was it was the first home run surrendered by the young right-hander, and it took over five months to happen.
Kiermaier's home run was the first one Biagini has allowed this season. That was a span of 56 1/3 innings. Hard to believe for a Rule V guy.
— Gregor Chisholm (@gregorMLB) September 4, 2016
Lefty reliever Matt Dermody made his major league debut in the eighth inning of tonights game. He recorded his first strikeout but was hit hard surrendering a double and a single, while recording a loud out to centre field. He left the game with runners on the corners and two out. Ryan Tepera got the final out of the inning to strand the runners. In the end, the pitcher who started the season in Single-A had a scoreless first appearance.
Toronto and Tampa Bay will wrap up their three games series tomorrow afternoon and the Blue Jays will try to avoid the sweep. Toronto will send lefty JA Happ (17-4, 3.23), winless in his last two starts, against Chris Archer (8-17, 4.10), who has a 0.92 WHIP over his last seven starts. First pitch 1:10 PM ET.
Lead Photo: Kim Klement – USA Today Sports