Toronto Blue Jays blow late lead, lose opener to Boston


The Toronto Blue Jays started strong in the series opener against the Boston Red Sox, but took a walk off loss in the bottom of the 9th to move their losing streak to four.  Aaron Sanchez took some positive strides in his start, but the offense failed to maintain their attack late, and the kids were not alright out of the bullpen.

5. 39. Final. 6. 14

Game Notes:

  • Jose Reyes and Devon Travis started the game off beautifully in the 1-2 spots.  After a leadoff single and stolen base from Reyes, Travis drove him in with an opposite field hit.  This was Travis’ 17th RBI, and with his contact abilities, Reyes could show more aggression on the base paths ahead of him.
  • Speaking of Reyes, he once again looked uncomfortable following a strikeout in the second inning.  At some point, the Blue Jays need to make a decision on his health.  While I admire his desire to play through the pain, it is not worth running the risk of a long-term injury and short-term underperformance.

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  • Jose Bautista returned to the lineup after dealing with a shoulder injury, manning the DH spot as he awaits full clearance for throwing and fielding.  Bautista took a walk on the day while going 0-for-3, but it didn’t look like his timing is all the way back.
  • Monday night certainly wasn’t a bunting clinic from the Blue Jays.  With runners on 1st and 2nd in the 4th inning, Kevin Pillar failed to drop a bunt twice before cutting loose with a single.  After Pillar, Dalton Pompey popped up a bunt of his own to Pablo Sandoval.  These are the little things that need to be done better, especially when looking back at a 1-run loss.
  • Edwin Encarnacion also continues to look out of sync at the plate.  He’s a notoriously slow starter, but it’s getting awfully late into April.  Encarnacion’s frustration began to show at the plate later in the game, but seeing some of the balls and strikes that were called, can you blame him?
  • The Toronto Blue Jays struck out 14 times on the night.  When over half of your outs are freebies, good things aren’t going to happen.

    C. Sanchez ended the game with a line of 5.2 innings pitched with 4 runs allowed, 3 earned, two walks and 7 strikeouts.  Both of his walks came in the first inning before settling down through the middle innings, so despite the 4 runners to cross the plate and a high pitch count, there was some progress here.<p class=. Game Ball. <b>Aaron Sanchez</b>. STARTING PITCHING

    Devon Travis will need to renovate his apartment if he keeps winning game balls at this rate.  Travis kickstarted the offense with a beautiful inside-out swing to score Reyes in the 1st, then smashed his 6th home run and 18th RBI with a solo shot in the 3rd.<p>If Devon Travis is able to stay anywhere near this level of production, he gives the Blue Jays another great option in the number two spot.  While his power is likely to taper off (unless you really <em>do</em> see him hitting 35+ home runs..), it’s proving extremely valuable while Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion struggle to find their grooves.</p>. Game Ball. <b>Devon Travis</b>. HITTING . B-

    RELIEF PITCHING . D-. Blue Jays fans can find some small comfort in the fact that Aaron Loup is back to his old form.  After a very strong outing in the final game against Tampa Bay, Loup needed just 10 pitches to record four outs in relief of Aaron Sanchez.<p>Unfortunately, an unexpected appearance from Roberto Osuna in the 8th did not go as planned.  After intentionally walking <strong><a href=. Appearances:. <b>Aaron Loup, Roberto Osuna, Miguel Castro</b>

    MVJ:  Josh Donaldson

    With Devon Travis already getting love for his bat, the Most Valuable Jay goes to Josh Donaldson for his standout defensive play throughout the latter half of the game.  Without a diving stab to save Sanchez and two spectacular catches on line drives to third, this ball game could have been much worse than it was.

    The Toronto Blue Jays will try again tomorrow night at 6:10 Eastern Time, as Drew Hutchison takes on Clay Buchholz.

    Next: Todd Redmond and Felix Doubront headed to Buffalo

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