Blue Jays: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly against the Yankees
After not playing in the MLB Playoffs for the past three seasons, the Blue Jays took the recent four-game series from the New York Yankees with three wins and punched their ticket into October Baseball. Here is a look at the Good, the Bad and the Ugly against the Yankees.
You have to start off by how the team turned things around this week. After it felt like the sky was falling during a six-game losing streak, the Blue Jays were able to come back and not only win a four game series, but come within two games of catching the Yankees for the second spot in the division.
There were a lot of great performances over the series so we’ll go right through it. The first choice was Vladimir Guerrero Jr., who went into the series batting .237, but after going 9-15 he raised his batting average by 26 points. VGJ was hitting the ball extremely hard all week and had five extra-base hits and also led the team with seven RBI while not striking out over the four games. He is turning it on at the perfect time, and let’s hope it keeps going.
The new young kid, Alejandro Kirk showed some spunk this week as he was able to get into the line-up in three of the four games and went 6-11 with hit three extra-base hits, including his first career home run. I am not convinced with him behind the plate yet, however he’s shown he can hit the fastball very well, which a lot of teammates have struggled with this week.
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It was hard to not give Hyun Jin Ryu the top nod after his pitching performance in the playoff clinching game Thursday night. Ryu was the first Blue Jays pitcher to go into the seventh inning and thew seven strong. For the eighth time in 12 appearances Ryu allowed one or less runs in the game. His strikeouts were down with just four, but that helped keep his pitch count down as he was able to get batters out early in the count.
After sitting out for almost a week, Rafael Dolis came in to pitch the eighth inning on Thursday night with the bases loaded and the go-ahead run at the plate. He was able to get a long fly ball out to get out of the inning and looked very dominant in the ninth. In the ninth, Dolis allowed a very soft infield single that was scrambled in between three strikeouts. Dolis ended up getting the save in the playoff clincher.
The last player I’ll mention, and there are lots who could get credit, is Cavan Biggio. Biggio quietly got things done again as he has a .389 OBP during the series and led the team with seven runs, which were assisted by his two doubles and home run. Biggio did strikeout five times, however he just seems to be getting robbed of calls at the plate.
I’m going to keep this short after a joyous series. Wilmer Font, Tanner Roark and Chase Anderson have just been awful. Roark started Tuesday night’s game and was pulled in the fifth inning after surrendering seven hits that would lead to six earned runs. Roark now owns a season ERA of 7.01. Anderson would follow suit and allow three runs in just under three innings. In all four appearances Anderson has had in September he has allowed more earned runs than innings pitched, and his ERA has ballooned to 7.67.
I’m not even sure what to say about Wilmer Font anymore, Font allowed a total of five earned runs in 1.1 innings pitched in the series. He has a career ERA of almost six and almost 10 on the season. I was okay with his appearance in the blow out loss as you just needed an inning eater and Santiago Espinal wasn’t on the active roster. Font ended up being designated for assignment before Thursday’s game, so that may be the last time we see him in a Blue Jays’ uniform.
Looking at Daniel Vogelbach’s stats in Milwaukee since the Blue Jays released him has not been good for my eyes. Let me make this clear, I do not think there was any place for him on the Jays’ roster, especially prior to Rowdy Tellez’s injury. However, seeing that he is 17 for 46 (.370) in Milwaukee just looks ugly because he is doing so well. Good for him.
The Blue Jays will now end the regular season with a three-game set starting Friday night in Buffalo against the Baltimore Orioles. If the Blue Jays happen to sweep the Orioles and the Yankees get swept by Miami, Toronto will end up in second place in the division. Stranger things have happened.