Sunday afternoon the Blue Jays were walked off by the Boston Red Sox as Toronto dropped the three game series two games to one. Here is a look at the Good, the Bad and the Ugly from Boston.
The big three of Bo Bichette, Cavan Biggio and Vladimir Guerrero Jr had very strong offensive weekends. While it still doesn’t look like VGJ is squaring up and hitting the ball with enough authority, he did go 4 for 10 with two walks, finding himself getting on base for half of his plate appearances. He did not record any extra base hits, but he also struck out just once in 12 plate appearances.
Sportsnet posted a good comparison during Sunday’s game between Guerrero Jr and Rafael Devers that showed they had almost identical numbers in their age 20 and 21 year old seasons. This definitely reminds remind you that Guerrero Jr is still just 21-years of age is batting in the middle of a Major League roster line-up. There is still lots of room to grow.
Biggio has had some ups and downs so far to start the year and got back to the ups in the series in Boston. He went 3 for 11 (.273) with three walks (.429 OBP) while adding a pair of home runs in the series, and struck out just once in 14 plate appearances. As for Bichette, he tied for the team lead in hits (4) three of which were extra base hits (two doubles and a home run), he also added his first walk of the season and picked up another stolen base.
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On the mound, the Blue Jays have seen either consistent success or failures depending on which pitcher you talk about. The dependable later inning pitchers have been Jordan Romano and Anthony Bass, and both pitched well again in each of their appearances. On Saturday with the team up by a run, Charlie Montoyo turned to Romano in the eighth inning where he faced four batters, striking out two and picking up his team leading fourth hold. Bass was brought in to collect his third save and pitched a clean ninth inning while striking out a batter.
The team was in that situation on Saturday thanks to Anthony Kay. Kay entered the game in the fourth inning with two runners on and got them out of the inning. Kay would pitch three more shutout innings to pick up his first win of the season. He has now appeared in three games totalling eight innings and allowing just one run. Montoyo recently said he wants to keep Kay stretched out as much as possible in case they need him to be the next starter up.
Finally, Ryan Borucki gets the last acknowledgement as he appeared in two games, faced seven batters and struck out five.
Offence from the catchers has been bad so far this year. While you want your catchers to concentrate more on defence, you still want some offence. Reese McGuire and Danny Jansen combined to go 0 for 10 during the series with just one walk. You can give some credit to the success of the pitchers this year to the duo, however some offence would be nice.
Rowdy Tellez struggled mightily in the series going 0 for 9 with three strikeouts. He did pick up three walks during the series, he needs to get his bat going.
Matt Shoemaker’s defensive side of baseball. It is very rare for a player to pick up multiple errors in an inning, especially for pitchers who don’t get as many defensive opportunities as an infielder. In the third inning during Sunday’s game, Shoemaker struggled fielding balls on consecutive plays. The first happened when Tzu-Wei Lin put down a sacrifice bunt that Shoemaker had trouble picking up cleanly and Lin reached base. The next batter Alex Verdugo hit one right back at Shoemaker and he rushed the throw to second base in an attempt to turn a 1-6-3 double play, throwing the ball into centre field. The errors ended up leading to a run in the inning.
Did you see progress with the Blue Jays this weekend? Who do you see as someone who is starting to take off?