After the Blue Jays had a pretty good week, going 4-2 over a 6 game span, this week was massive for the Jays. Toronto had 7 games this week, and all of them were against teams in the wild card hunt. It started with a 3 game series against Oakland, and then a 4 game series with the Yankees.
Game 1: Jays 11 – 10 Athletics
The first game of this series was a barn burner. Matt Chapman opened the scoring with a 2-run double off of Jays starter Alek Manoah in the 1st. Teoscar Hernandez got those 2 runs back with a home run in the 4th inning, tying the game at 2. Oakland would score another 2 runs in the 5th, and Tony Kemp would end Manoah’s night after 5+ innings with a 2-run home run. The A’s would add another pair of runs in the 7th, to make it 8-2, and just when the Jays looked out of it, a wild 8th inning was about to change that. RBIs from Vladdy Guerrero and Alejandro Kirk had the score at 8-4, and then a grand slam by Lourdes Gurriel Jr tied the game at 8! All the momentum was with Toronto going into the 9th. Jordan Romano would try to hold Oakland, but would give up a 2-run HR to Mark Canha to make it 10-8. The Jays never quit in this game, and the hero of the night would be Marcus Semien, when he hit a walk off 3-run homer in the bottom of the 9th. One of the craziest games all year.
Game 2: Jays 10 – 8 Athletics
The Jays looked to continue the hot hitting, and had early home runs from Gurriel Jr, Danny Jansen, and Breyvic Valera which lead to them taking a 4-0 lead after 4 innings. Jose Berrios was good in this game again. He allowed a solo HR to Matt Chapman in the 5th, but through 6 innings was solid. He just couldn’t get the final out in the 7th, and left after 6 2/3 innings but still up 4-3. In the bottom of the 7th, Teoscar Hernandez hit a 3-run homer run to make it 7-3. It continued in the 8th, when Lourdes Gurriel came up with the bases loaded again and cleared the bases, this time with a 3-run double. With the score 10-2 in the 9th, the Toronto bullpen made it interesting by giving up 2 HRs that lead to 5 runs, but thankfully Jordan Romano got out of the inning and the Jays take game 2.
Game 3: Jays 8 – 0 Athletics
This game was a lot less stressful for Jays fans, as the club took an early lead and never looked back. Lourdes Gurriel Jr kept his incredible series going with another big hit, this time a 2-run triple in the 2nd. Marcus Semien hit his 35th homer of the season, and Alejandro Kirk chipped in with a 3-run shot of his own. The Jays were up 8-0 after 4 innings, and with Robbie Ray on the mound, it was more then enough. Ray had another great performance, going 6 2/3 innings, while only giving up 1 hit and striking out 10. This was an absolutely huge sweep for the Jays.
Jays series Standout:
There were a couple of Jays to choose from for this series, but I have to go with Lourdes Gurriel Jr. he had so many clutch hits and cashed in 10 RBIs over the 3 game series.
Game 1: Jays 8 – 0 Yankees
The Jays kept on rolling in New York in game 1, and one Blue Jay in particular was hot on this night. Marcus Semien and Vladdy Guerrero Jr got the Jays started with back-to-back HRs in the 1st inning. Their 36th and 40th home runs of the season. That was the only offense in the game until the 7th inning. Hyun Jin Ryu was solid for Toronto. He did his job, and went 6 innings, and didn’t allow a run. Lourdes Gurriel kept his hit streak going with an RBI single in the 7th, to make it 3-0. Marcus Semien put this game to bed with a grand slam in the top of the 9th inning to make it 8-0. Just like that the Jays have back-to-back 8-0 nothing wins.
Game 2: Jays 5 – 1 Yankees
This was another good game for the Toronto Pitching staff, and the offense continued as well. Alejandro Kirk got the Jays on the board first with a solo shot in the 2nd. Anthony Rizzo would knock in a run in the bottom of the 3rd, to tie the game at 1. That was all the offense Steven Matz would allow, he went a solid 6 innings for Toronto. A couple of sac flies made it 3-1 Toronto, the game was put out of reach from 2 more solo home runs, one by Marcus Semien for his 38th of the season, and the 2nd HR of the game by Kirk. Soria, Mayza, and Romano pitched the last 3 innings of shut out baseball.
Game 3: Jays 6 – 3 Yankees
This game was scoreless through 3 innings, but in the 4th, the Jays took a 3-0 lead thanks to a wild pitch and a Marcus Semien 2-run single. Alek Manoah was on the mound for the Jays, and he ran into some trouble in the 5th. With 2 Yankees on base, Manoah would give up a home run to Brett Gardner to tie the game. Manoah was taken out of the game after 5 2/3, and left with a no decision. The game was still tied in the 7th, when the Jays started to tack on runs. Teoscar Hernandez had an RBI single in the 7th, Jake Lamb had a sac fly in the 8th, and Vladdy hit his 41st HR of the season in the 9th. Jordan Romano closed this one out, earning his 16th save of the season.
Game 4: Jays 6 – 4 Yankees
The Jays would earn themselves the 4-game sweep thanks to timely hitting and solid pitching. Toronto got on the board in the 1st with a Bo Bichette solo HR. The Jays doubled their lead in the 5th, when Randal Grichuk hit a solo shot of his own. Anthony Rizzo tied the game in the 6th with a 2-run homer off of Jose Berrios. Berrios pitched well, with his only mistake being that HR allowed. He went 6 2/3, and struck out 8 batters. The difference again in this game was late inning runs. Bichette singled in a run in the 7th, Danny Jansen walked with the bases loaded in the 8th, and an RBI double from Breyvic Valera and another HR by Guerrero in the 9th, had the Jays up 6-2. A couple of solo shots were surrendered by Nate Pearson, but he got the job done.
Jays Series Standout:
Marcus Semien had a monster series in New York, basically winning game 1 by himself and chipping in with clutch hits the rest of the series.
This has to be the most impressive week of the season for Toronto, the needed a big week and they got it. The Jays are right in the thick of it right now, only a .5 game back of that second spot. Toronto have to keep it going as they have a 4 game series against Baltimore, and then a 3 game series against AL East leading Tampa Bay Rays.
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Here is the latest episode of the Chtib and Zhang show, where the boys are talking some UFC and of course, Habs talk.