The Toronto Blue Jays enter Sunday’s game against the New York Yankees on their first 3-game losing streak of the 2013 season, and at 9-16, Toronto truly needs to get things flowing in the right direction.
That puts a lot of pressure on ace R.A. Dickey, who is still struggling with neck and back tightness. Dickey persevered through 6 innings on Tuesday, ultimately taking the loss to the Orioles after surrendering 4 runs and walking five hitters.
Dickey will be opposed by right-hander Phil Hughes. Hughes is 0-2 on the season with a 5.14 ERA and a 6.9 K/9 ratio. However, he is coming off of back-to-back quality starts, where he put up 7 innings and allowed just two earned runs against the Rays and the Diamondbacks respectively. In those two contests, he posted game scores of 63 and 61 while striking out 6 batters in each outing.
Toronto Blue Jays
4/28 @bluejays lineup: Lawrie-3b Rasmus-CF Bautista-RF Encarnacion-DH Cabrera-LF Lind-1bIzturis-2b Blanco-C Kawasaki-SS Dickey-P
— Blue Jays-Official(@BlueJays) April 28, 2013
New York Yankees
#Yankees lineup vs TOR: Gardner CF, Nix 3B, Cano 2B, Wells LF, Youkilis 1B, Hafner DH, Ichiro RF, Nunez SS, Stewart C, Sabathia P
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) April 27, 2013
New and Notes:
- The Blue Jays recalled Justin Germano from Triple-A Buffalo on Saturday. Germano will be available in the bullpen Sunday and could be used on Thursday if Josh Johnson is unable to make his next scheduled start against Boston.
- Speaking of Johnson, MRI results on his triceps came back negative. However, he is still considered day-to-day heading into that Thursday start against the first-place Red Sox.
— Mike Wilner (@Wilnerness590) April 28, 2013
- The A’s have designated Casper Wells for assignment:
— Oakland Athletics (@Athletics) April 28, 2013
Top of the 1st - Relatively quiet inning for the Blue Jays as they make Hughes throw just 13 pitches. Brett Lawrie strikes out swinging, followed by Colby Rasmus with a fly-out to left. Jose Bautista ends it by swinging and missing on a slider away.
Bottom of the 1st – Solid inning by R.A. Dickey, not showing any signs of tightness. Dickey gets Ichiro Suzuki to ground out on a nice running throw by Lawrie. Robinson Cano follows by flying out to Melky Cabrera on the first pitch. Dickey then gets three weak swings from Vernon Wells, resulting in a ground-out to Munenori Kawasaki to end the frame. Scoreless after 1 inning.
Top of the 2nd – Edwin Encarnacion starts the inning off by popping up behind second base. A solid 8-pitch at-bat by Melky Cabrera ends with a ground-out to Overbay who was hugging the line. Adam Lind, fresh off paternity leave, watches strike three to close out the frame.
Bottom of the 2nd - Dickey gets Travis Hafner on a deep flyout to center. Brennan Boesch then gets just enough of a knuckler to put the Yankees on the board with a solo home run. Bautista doesn’t seem to be the guy you want on the wall. Dickey then battles back and gets Jayson Nix to fly to left before Overbay lines a single to right. Dickey ends the inning with a whiff of Eduardo Nunez. 1-0 Yankees after 2 innings.
Top of the 3rd – Maicer Izturis keeps himself on the wrong side of Jays fans by flying out to center on the second pitch of his at bat. Henry Blanco makes Hughes throw 8 pitches but ultimately strikes out on a foul tip. Munenori Kawasaki breaks up the no-hitter with a chopper up the middle, giving Toronto their first base runner of the day. Kawasaki then loses his car keys on the dive back to first on a pick-off attempt. Lawrie ends it by swinging through strike three.
Bottom of the 3rd – Dickey makes short work of Chris Stewart for his second K of the game. Then gets a weak liner from Ichiro that Kawasaki made a sliding grab on in the middle of the infield. Cano the hits a shallow flyball to center that Rasmus puts away to end the inning. A solid 10-pitch inning for Dickey. After 3, still 1-0 Yankees.
Top of the 4th – Colby Rasmus gets the fourth started by flying to right on the second pitch of the at-bat. Bautista then follows by giving Hughes his sixth strike-out of the day. Encarnacion extends the inning by hitting a slow roller down the third base line for a single. A cheap hit is still a hit right? Melky then bloops a single to left and the Jays have 2 on with 2 outs. Welcome back Adam Lind, with an RBI single up the middle, Cabrera goes to third and Jays get on the board. Izturis kills the rally with a pop-up behind second. Game tied at 1 heading into the…
Bottom of the 4th – Dickey coasting a bit now, gets Vernon Wells to ground out to Kawasaki on two pitches. What a play by Kawasaki to run that ball down against the shift to make the second out on Hafner. Will have to look for a GIF on that one later today. Two pitches later, Dickey gets fly out to Rasmus in center. Dickey now at 53 pitches through 4 innings. Still tied at 1 apiece.
Here’s that GIF from the fellas at Gamereax.com once again.
Top of the 5th – Blanco starts the Jays half of the fifth with a pop-up to right field. Kawasaki provides a similar outcome by popping out to Cano on the sixth pitch of his at-bat. Lawrie finally puts some wood on the ball with a two-out single up the middle. Blue Jays still haven’t got a solid swing on Hughes to this point. Rasmus ends the inning by flying to center.
Bottom of the 5th – Kawasaki doing his part to get written in for the All-Star campaign by making another solid play at short to get Nix to start the inning. Overbay then grounds out to second for out number two. Dickey hands out the first walk of the day for either pitcher by putting Nunez on with a free pass. Dickey then battles back from a 3-1 count to get Chris Stewart with the whiff.
Top of the 6th – Bautista gets something started by doubling on a line-drive to left field. Hughes then gets EE and Melky to strike out swinging. The Yankees then make the decision to intentionally walk Adam Lind, but Bausista with some head’s up baserunning allows him to steal third base. Izturis then doubles in Bautista before Blanco K’s to end it. Jays take the lead 2-1.
Bottom of the 6th – Another 10-pitch inning for Dickey, who sets down the side in order, getting a ground-out from Ichiro, another pop-up from Cano, and then a strike-out by Wells on what MLB Gameday determined to be an Eephus pitch.
Top of the 7th – Kawasaki and Bautista bookend the inning with a pair of strike-outs around a fly-out by Lawrie and a broken-bat single by Rasmus. Blue Jays have now struck out 11 times on the afternoon, but still lead 2-1 as we head to the bottom of the 7th inning. Good news is Dickey is dealing with 80 pitches through 6.
Bottom of the 7th – A solid single by Hafner to start things off for the Yankees. Boesch follows up with a weak pop-up to Bautista in right field. Nix flies softly to center, but the next batter Overbay hits a 2-run home run to right-center field into the Yankee bullpen. Dickey ends it by getting Nunez to fly out to left. Dickey, at 93 pitches, could be done after that, with Delabar warming in the pen. If it is, solid outing for Dickey despite the two home runs and leaving with his team behind. Yankees now lead 3-2 going to the 8th.
Top of the 8th – David Robertson in for the Yankees and promptly gets Encarnacion to ground out to Nunez to start the inning. Melky then strikes out on a foul tip and Lind grounds out to Nunez at shortstop as Robertson gets first the Jays on just seven pitches in the eighth.
Bottom of the 8th – As expected, Toronto turns to Delabar to start the bottom of the inning. Dickey ends the day after 7 innings, surrendering 3 runs on four hits, with 1 walk and 4 strike-outs on the day. A loud out by Chris Stewart to left starts the inning for the Yankees. Delabar then does the impossible and walks Ichiro. Cecil warming in the bullpen as Delabar having trouble finding the strike-zone and Delabar walks Cano as well. Wells almost does it again with a deep fly ball to left field that allows Ichiro to move into third with one out
That’s the end of the day for Delabar as Cecil comes in to face Hafner. Cecil promptly does what he’s paid to do, getting Hafner to strike-out to end the inning and keep it a one-run deficit. 3-2 Yankees
Top of the 9th – The Jays will have to get to Rivera using Izturis, Bonifacio, and Kawasaki. Interesting move to pinch-hit Bonifacio for Blanco. Izturis lines out to Wells in left to start the inning. Bonifacio then follows with a three-pitch strike-out. J.P. Arencibia, who is hitless in 4 career at-bats against River, comes in to pinch hit for Kawasaki, and grounds out after five pitches to end the game, where of course Overbay puts it away.
That is now four straight losses for the Blue Jays and drops the team to 9-17. One has to wonder when a closed door meeting will be held with this team, as they simply seem to be going through the motions.
Thanks for joining me and the Jays Journal team for this live thread! Toronto finally gets a day off on Monday after playing 20 straight days.