WP: BOS – John Lackey – 7.0IP, 2H, 1ER, 3K
LP: TOR – Drew Hutchison – 2.2IP, 9H, 6ER, 2K
The Toronto Blue Jays allowed two touchdowns on Monday night, falling to the Boston Red Sox by a score of 14-1. The inability to win in “must”-win situations or streak-starting games has long plagued the Blue Jays and frustrated their fan base, and last night’s effort was no different. On some nights, baseball looks impossible.
Starter Drew Hutchison did little to solidify the Blue Jays confidence in his arm going forward. Through just 2.2IP, Hutchison had little trouble finding the strike zone, but seemed to find every Red Sox bat along the way. The four-run 3rd inning that chased Hutchison was highlighted by Stephen Drew (2-4, 4RBI) winning the battle of the Drews with a three run shot to right field. The Blue Jays cannot afford to have a struggling starter standing on “thin ice”, but another poor start following this outing may land Hutchison in question.
Newly acquired lefty Brad Mills entered the game for Drew Hutchison in the 3rd and continued to offer up batting practice for the suddenly hot Red Sox lineup. Allowing 8ER on 7H in just 2.oIP, Brad Mills did not leave a Hall of Fame level first impression with the Blue Jays. Mills was taken deep by David Ortiz (2-5, 2HR, 4RBI) twice in the fourth and fifth innings, followed by a Mike Napoli solo shot to close the book early on what manager John Gibbons likely hoped to be an extended relief outing. Thankfully for the Blue Jays, Rob Rasmussen and Todd Redmond (now with a 2.41ERA) grabbed their mops and held the Red Sox scoreless over their final 4.1IP.
On offense, the Blue Jays mustered only 3H and zero BB. Back-to-back doubles by Eric Kratz and Juan Francisco were the entire offence in the 3rd inning for the Blue Jays. Juan Francisco advanced to 3rd base with just one away in that inning, but both Munenori Kawasaki and Jose Reyes grounded out to the pitcher. Many Blue Jays hitters seemed intent on making up the double-digit deficit with one swing, leaving patience and productive team at-bats by the wayside.
MVJ: Rob Rasmussen, recalled as part of The Curious Case of Sergio Santos, gets the Most Valuable Jay award for providing competent mop-up duty, which says as much about the Blue Jays performance as anything. Rasmussen looked sharp, striking out 3 over 2.1IP of 1H ball. Although he has had his struggles this season, Rasmussen is a candidate to bolster the Blue Jays pen down the stretch. I’ve enjoyed the flashes from Rasmussen, and his interviews have given me a new man on the Blue Jays to root for.
Thankfully for Blue Jays fans, in baseball, most days are game days. Although this didn’t come at a good time for the Blue Jays, you would be hard-pressed to find an MLB club that doesn’t get blown out at some point over their 162-games (even though last night was a bit convincing…). Tonight’s game will show how much fight this taped-together roster truly has in it going down the stretch. Shall we end on a positive note and discuss which of the Blue Jays three hits was our personal favourite last night?
Tonight’s Probable Starters:
TOR: J.A. Happ (7-5, 4.91ERA)
BOS: Jake Peavy (1-8, 4.59ERA)