Blue Jays: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly against Tampa Bay

The Blue Jays finished off a disappointing three game series on Sunday afternoon by way of a doubleheader against the Tampa Bay.  The team lost both games of the double header to drop the series two games to one.

The Good
As a team the Blue Jays batted .282 in the series with nine home runs, most of which came on Friday night when they hit six home runs. Teoscar Hernandez continues to lead the way on offence as he went 6 for 13 (.462) in the series with a pair of home runs and a double, while adding five RBI.  Hernandez also struck out just once in 13 plate appearances.  it appears early on that he has improved greatly on chasing pitches down and away.

Randal Grichuk also had a series that will hopefully turn things around for him.  Grichuk went 5 for 12 (.417) and also added a pair of home runs and a double.  He went into the series without an extra base hit on the season and was able to collect three.

While a good chunk of the bullpen has received a lot of early praise this season (Ryan Borucki, Thomas Hatch, Anthony Kay) one pitcher that should be getting just as much has been A.J. Cole.  Cole pitched twice in the series for a total 1.2 innings and allowed just one unearned run which we will get to later in the article.  Cole has now pitched 9.2 innings this year without allowing an earned run.

The Bad
Despite losing the two games on Sunday, the worst news of the day was that Bo Bichette will be going to the 10-day injured list with a knee injury.  He felt a tweak in his knee on Saturday and went for an MRI Sunday which led to the being place on the injured list.  Bichette was having a strong start to the season as he led the team with a .361 average while adding five home runs and 13 RBI.  The big problem now is who is going to replace him at shortstop?  I won’t be able to handle Brandon Drury getting that time, I think it is time to give Santiago Espinal a long look there.

I don’t want to go too much into Anthony Kay as I have really liked him this year so far, but he struggled with his command in the series.  Kay pitched twice for a total of 2.1 innings and walked five batters, gave up two hits, but was able to limit the damage to just one run.  We’ll chalk this up to just being off his norm for the weekend.

Vic Carapazza gets the final nod for being bad.  There are few umpires I remember, but the ones I do remember are the bad ones.  Carapazza always seems to have it in for the Blue Jays and a quick google search on him has a ton of Blue Jays and Carapazza content.

Sunday afternoon Matt Shoemaker was frustrated over a non-strike call, which if given to him would have ended the inning.  However, the call was a ball and a couple pitches later Shoemaker gave up a three-run home run.  The pitch was at best borderline, but Carapazza needs to understand Shoemaker is frustrated not only on the call but giving up the home run.  During Shoemaker’s frustration he yelled something from the dugout and was tossed.  If it was another umpire I would have thought Shoemaker probably said something to get ejected, but with it being Carapazza I have to question it because of his history with the Blue Jays.  If you want a bit of entertainment do a quick YouTube search on “Tim and Sid’s rant on Vic Carapazza” from 2016.

The Ugly
I think anyone that was watching the games over the weekend they know what the Ugly will be.  In Game 3 of the series with two outs in the last inning, Austin Meadows at first, Yandy Diaz hit a soft fly ball to right field.  The hit should have left Meadows at third and Diaz at first, however Teoscar Hernandez was a little too relaxed on the play.  Hernandez would drop the bounce and then kick the ball towards centre field, which led to Meadows scoring, tying the game and the Blue Jays would eventually lose in extra innings.

What do you think the Blue Jays should do at shortstop over the next two weeks?