The Toronto Blue Jays could not find their swing when they needed it most as they dropped the ALCS opener 2-0 to Cleveland on Friday night at Progressive Field.
Estrada gave the Blue Jays eight strong innings, allowing just the two earned runs on six hits and a walk. The right-hander struck out six, needing 101 pitches for Toronto’s first complete game of the 2016 season.
Toronto’s downfall in this game was their inability cash in on a slew of early opportunities with runners in scoring position. Cleveland starter Corey Kluber pitched out of jams very well, but the Blue Jays hitters failed to come up with hits when they needed them most despite their many opportunities.
Josh Donaldson and Edwin Encarnacion both went 2-for-4. Michael Saunders also added two singles, but the Blue Jays couldn’t get anything going in between those three. Jose Bautista led the way with three strikeouts and Toronto totalled 12 as a team.
Second-baseman Devon Travis was forced to leave the game in the bottom of the fifth inning after moving to his left to cover first base on a ground ball. Travis came up hopping, avoiding putting weight on his injured knee. It appeared that he’d further aggravated the bone bruise on the play prior, a Coco Cruise bunt, and did look uncomfortable through the early innings.
Both sides, Toronto especially, expressed their disagreement with home plate umpire Laz Diaz throughout the game. Melvin Upton Jr. was especially vocal following a seventh inning strikeout that appeared to be anything but.
Game two is scheduled for 4:00 ET on Saturday in Cleveland before the series returns to Toronto on Monday. J.A. Happ (20-4, 3.18 ERA) will face Josh Tomlin (13-9, 4.40 ERA), who’s start has been bumped up one game due to a minor injury suffered by Trevor Bauer while fixing one of his drones. Bauer will now start in game three.