What makes this Blue Jays team so averse to prosperity?
What keeps them from taking advantage of a truly terrible opponent is that they raced to a 5-0 lead on Saturday night, only to throw it all away.
Almost in the truest sense of the word.
Yes, another winnable game against one of MLB’s true weaklings went wrong out west in the thin mountain air of Denver, where the Rockies handed them a seemingly demoralizing 8-7 loss that was made worse by a desperate ninth-inning rally narrowly failed with the bases loaded.
While we recognize that there is not yet a soft enough spot in the schedule for a Jays team to put together a serious winning streak this season, given the loss in the second part of a three-game weekend series in Denver fell behind to 74-62 one was unsightly.
Where should I start with this? Yes, there was that big early lead after two innings, only to see the Rockies storm back with eight unanswered runs until they added a pair in the ninth to make things interesting late.
There was Toronto lefty starter Yusei Kikuchi, who struggled hard throughout his 4.2 innings and was ready to give the Rockies multiple opportunities to get back in the game.
There was infielder Ernie Clement making two errors on the field, which directly led to four unearned Colorado runs to fuel their rally. Do you think this team is missing injured All-Star shortstop Bo Bichette?
There was reliever Yimi Garcia, who usually makes money coming in with runners on base and walking the first batter he faces in the fifth. Thanks to a couple of walks to end Kikuchi’s night, you could smell the bad things coming at this point when the bases were full.
In fact, the Rockies’ Brenton Doyle blasted a shot off the right-field wall, a base-clearing triple that gave the hosts a 7-5 lead.
Three walks, all with two outs, all made it home to turn the still comfortable lead into a deficit, that pretty much sums it up.
Want more? In the fourth inning, before things really took a turn, Vlad Guerrero Jr. was meekly tricked into an inning-ending double play. It was a unique opportunity to fully expose this game.
Instead, the Jays decided to just blow it.
A game, yes, and as you’ll see below, it didn’t cost them much in the wildcard race, but nights like this just can’t happen. Good teams don’t let bad teams take a 5-0 lead and just give them a win. For a Jays team looking to make up ground on its pursuers, this was inexcusable.
It was one of those crazy scoreboard-watching nights, as the four front-runners in the AL wild-card race were all a little crazy in their respective contests.
There was good news in the first game, which went to the finale at Minute Maid Park in Houston, as the Yankees held on for a 5-4 victory over the Astros.
Minutes later, the Mariners, having scored a run in the ninth, held on for an 8-7 victory over the Mets. Bad news for Toronto’s faithful.
And finally, the most positive development of the night came in Texas, where the Twins scored three runs in the top of the 10th to take a 9-7 win over the Rangers.
If you like empty wins, that allowed the Jays to stay 1.5 games behind the Rangers and clinch the third and final wild card spot.
Despite the mistakes he had made, Kikuchi was not at his best. The left-hander allowed six hits and six runs (two earned) but needed 100 pitches to reach that point.
His four walks — including the two fatal ones that prompted manager John Schneider to end his night — were the most Kikuchi had allowed since early May.
On the bright side, Kikuchi has pitched in the fifth inning of all 27 of his starts this season, making him the only Jays starter to do so.
CONTINUE TO PLAY
At least the Jays made things interesting in the top of the ninth when a walk by George Springer was followed by a triple by Davis Schneider, which brought his team within two points… That brought the potential tying run in the form of Guerrero Jr. onto the scene . , whose soft fly ball to flat center couldn’t even get Davis home… After Whit Merrifield struck out, Schneider finished on a wild pitch, then Alejandro Kirk and Cavan Biggio put the tying run in scoring position for Daulton Varsho, who made it from hit a pitch to load the bases. That brought recently drafted Spencer Horwitz into the game with a chance to play hero, only to end the game. A wild thing indeed… Early on, it looked like the Jays would continue their recent offensive party… The Jays totaled six walks, unforced errors against a lightweight opponent that entered the contest on a five-game losing streak… One of the first bright spots on offense: a huge 438-foot home run from Kevin Kiermaier, taking advantage of some of that hitter-friendly thin air.
https://torontosun.com/sports/baseball/toronto-blue-jays/blue-jays-take-the-rockies-road-hand-gift-win-to-national-league-doormat The final point comes when the Blue Jays blow a 5-0 lead against the weak Colorado Rockies