Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Jays Win! Game Recap: Toronto Blue Jays vs Houston Astros

The Blue Jays won the first game of this series against the Houston Astros behind a shaky start by Mark Buerhle.

W- Buerhle (2-0) L- Oberholtzer (0-2) SV- Santos (3)

In the first inning, Maicer Izturis made a phenomenal diving glove flip to start a double play. It was a welcome surprise for those of us who criticized his defense last season. Check it out!

In the bottom of the first Jose Bautista launches his 4th bomb of the year to give the Blue Jays a 1-0 lead.

In the bottom of the fourth inning, Dioner Navarro hits a bloop that benefited from the Rogers Centre turf bounce. It hopped over the head of Robbie Grossman to drive in Edwin Encarnacion from 1st to make it 2-0.

Mark Buehrle was not as stellar as he was against Tampa Bay last time out. The young Astros hitters were all over him to the tune of 8 hits. He managed to pitch in and out of trouble for 5 1/3 innings. His final line: 108 pitches, 5.1 innings, 8 hits, 1 earned run, 1 walk, 3 strike outs. This brings his ERA all the way up to 0.64.

On the other side of the pitching mound, Brett Oberholtzer had Jays hitters off balance for 5 1/3 innings. He looked good, and was never really in any trouble save for back to back walks to Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion that led to him being pulled from the game. His final line: 92 pitches, 5.1 innings, 3 hits, 3 earned runs, 3 walks, 3 hits. The score board doesn’t really reflect how effective Oberholtzer was. Blue Jay  hitters didn’t make much solid contact on anything other than Bautista’s first inning homerun.

In the 6th inning, Bautista was caught napping and was picked off at second. The Astros’ youngsters saved themselves a run because the next batter, Dioner Navarro laced his second hit- a solid double- off the left center field wall to drive in Encarnacion from first for the second time this game to take a 3-1 lead. Had Bautista been paying attention, the Jays would have scored 2 with two outs.

Aaron Loup started the 7th inning with back to back walks to Robbie Grossman and Jonathan Villar. That’s not a good sign considering I have predicted he will be an All Star this season. The Astros immediately executed a double steal. Then Jose Altuve struck again. He already had 3 hits- all on the first pitch of each at bat. His 4th at bat in the 7th drove in the Astros 2nd run of the game.

In the 7th, Jonathan Diaz worked a walk off Kevin Chapman and Melky Cabrera brought him home with a solid jack to LF to bring the lead to 5-2. It is Cabrera’s 4th homerun in 4 games!

Brett Cecil came in the 8th and gave up a walk to L.J. Hoes, a double to Matt Dominguez and then made a great play on a comeback dribbler. Cecil pounced on it and made a quick shovel to Navarro to catch Hoes trying to score. And, once again there was a review of the play to see if Hoes was actually safe. The call stood. Is this whole replay thing getting a bit much? Do other sports have THIS MUCH?! (You can weigh in below) Anyway, Cecil then struck his way out of the inning, getting Dexter Fowler.

Bautista and Encarnacion walk back to back again to start the 8th. We might be saying that a lot this season. The Blue Jays failed to score in this inning and went 1-7 with RISP. For comparison: Houston went 0-14 with RISP

Sergio Santos came on in the 9th for the save and mowed down the three batters he faced striking out the side.

Blue Jays improve to 4-4 on the young 2014 season. They’ll take on Houston in game 2 of this series tomorrow evening.

NOTE: The Blue Jays bullpen is picking up where they left off last season. Loup, Steve Delabar, Cecil and Santos combined for 1 hit, 1 ER and 7 strikeouts.

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Tags: Game Recaps Toronto Blue Jays

  • Baqi Amin

    The home plate reviews are annoying and awfully executed by the MLB. It seems like they don’t even know the details of their own rule.

    • Shaun Doyle

      It sure is annoying. Hopefully it is just growing pains. Enought people are complaining that they’ll review the reviewing.

  • RyanMueller

    Great recap Shaun. You are right the bullpen is doing very well. Let us hope they don’t burn out. They starters have looked better than last year so with any luck that won’t be an issue.

    • Shaun Doyle

      Gibby is using them well. We just need quality starts to be the norm. It is silly to expect it every time, but the norm would put us in a great spot.

      PS: Santos looked so good last night. Slider was brilliant.

      • RyanMueller

        Well the jays already have 3 quality starts this which is 3x the number we had last year at this time.
        When janssen comes back does santos stay or move back to the 8th inning role. Imo he should move back to the 8th

        • Shaun Doyle

          Agreed. The rotation could improve, but it hasn’t been nearly as bad as last year.

          When Janssen comes back, I might still use Santos in the 9th…at least for a bit. He’s on fire. And, not coming off an injury. But, that is not what they’ll do. They’ll probably plug Casey right back in.

  • Ewan Brocklehurst

    This replay of every play at the plate is going to become a real sore point in baseball. Both reviewed plays in the last few games were good tags last year, but this whole “lane to the plate” is nuts. If it is supposed to apply here then why not tags at the other bases when a player is seen to be blocked off by the foot or lower leg of the infielder and cannot get his hand on the plate. Lets go back to the way it was!

    • Shaun Doyle

      I think we just need to work out the kinks. You are absolutely right. In the run of the season, umpires don’t really blow that many calls. The reviews are proving that…for the most part. It is not perfect. It is good in theory. It just needs to be worked out. What bothers me more is the umpire visit, watch the dugout wait for a sign to challenge or not. I like that umpires can choose to review the play