W: F. Liriano 1-1
L: R. Porcello 1-2
S: R. Osuna 1-0
W, 1-1 | 5.1 IP | 0 (0) | 4 H | 1 BB | 6 K |
91 PC, B: 30, S: 61 | 5.11 ERA
Francisco Liriano’s last start was a solid outing which saw him go 6.2 innings, striking out 10 and only surrendering 2 runs on 5 hits. It was a bounce-back performance after a terrible game on April 7 where he only recorded one out against Tampa Bay. This start was his first time facing the Red Sox in a Blue Jays uniform.
Liriano quickly retired the first three in order and continued pitching well into the 2nd. He had some snappy movement on his pitches, leaving many confused Boston hitters in the batter’s box. Only Xander Bogaerts was able to get a hold of one and slap it into right field for a single in the 2nd inning.
Cruising through the 3rd and 4th innings with ease, Francisco was firmly in control and had racked up 6 strikeouts and no walks. Of his 57 pitches in the first four innings, 39 were thrown for strikes. In the 5th he had trouble getting Bogaerts out again, this time Xander earned a walk. The Blue Jays couldn’t turn a double play on a grounder by Chris Young, only getting the lead runner. Next up was Sandoval, who singled to right field which put two runners on for Boston. Thankfully, Liriano got Sandy Leon to ground into an inning-ending double play to escape the jam.
On the third time through the order, Boston was starting to figure Liriano out. Back-to-back singles from Benintendi and Betts in the 6th effectively ended his outing. Francisco’s efficiency was beginning to falter, resulting in him lasting only 5.1 innings, giving up 3 hits and a walk. Although the bullpen was needed earlier than the team would have liked, they should be very happy with Liriano’s performance.
Unlike the rest of the hitters in the league, the Blue Jays love to see Rick Porcello on the mound. Toronto has historically performed well against the right-hander. Kevin Pillar continued to be hot at the plate, hoofing out a lead-off infield single in the 1st. He would advance to third but was stranded as the inning ended on a ground ball by Morales.
Pablo Sandoval is not having fun playing at the Rogers Centre in this series. In the last game, he dove for the ball on the third base line three times and missed them all. Today in the 2nd inning, he air-mailed a throw to first base on a ground ball from Troy Tulowitzki. Russell Martin then hit a ground ball to first base which got past Gold-Glove winning Mitch Moreland. Martin made it to second and Troy went to third base with no outs. Darwin Barney waited for the pitch he wanted and hit it up the middle for a 2-RBI single, putting the Jays on the board. Barney himself would cross the plate on singles from Pillar and Carrera. The 3-run inning for the Blue Jays was not only very productive, but it costed Rick Porcello 33 pitches.
In the 6th inning, Troy Tulowitzki led-off with a single to centre-field against Porcello. This was the fourth time in the game that Toronto had the first batter of the inning on base, but only one of them would come around to score.
Kevin Pillar is scorching hot right now. His third hit of the game came in the 7th when he singled to centre. Pillar got to third after stealing two bases but would be stranded on a Jose Bautista strike out.
Some of the problems from last night’s game carried over into this one. Toronto could only manage to score in one inning of the game, the 2nd. They also had trouble increasing their lead by taking advantage of players who were on base. The main thing was that they put a ‘W’ on the board, and luckily the pitching was superb.
|J. Biagini (0-0)||1.2||0||0||0||0||1||12 (2-10)||0.82|
|J. Grilli (0-1)||1.0||0||0||1||1||1||21 (8-13)||3.18|
|R. Osuna (S, 1-0)||1.0||0||0||1||0||1||13 (3-10)||3.00|
Trying to preserve a 3-run lead in the 6th with one out, Gibby called for Joe Biagini to face Hanley Ramirez with runners on first and second. Biagini got it done the way he needed to, with a double play to end the inning. After throwing only two pitches in the previous inning, Joe was on in the 7th as well. He struck out Mitch Moreland on three pitches and then got Bogaerts and Young to ground out. This is the Joe Biagini we have come to know and love.
In the 8th, Jason Grilli gave up a lead-off hit to Pablo Sandoval who singled to right-centre field. Grilli took a comebacker from Pedroia to the lower leg that looked pretty painful. However, he waved off the coaching staff in the dugout like a champ and continue to face the Boston hitters. Grilli got Betts to ground out to end the inning after issuing a walk to Benintendi.
It was a save opportunity for Roberto Osuna in the 9th inning. He gave up a single to Moreland, but was able to close the game with ease. Excellent work from the bullpen today. They kept the shutout intact and minimized the impact of Boston hits. We saw the three familiar faces who were ultra-effective for them in the late innings last season.
3-4 | 0 BB | 0 R | 0 2B | 0 3B | 0 HR | 1 K | 2 SB | AVG: .345, OBP: .368, Slug: .491
1-4 | 0 BB | 1 R | 0 2B | 0 3B | 0 HR | 0 K | 0 SB | AVG: .264, OBP: .286, Slug: .396
Committed an uncharacteristic fielding error in the 4th inning. He appeared to be upset with the dirt on the infield. The ground looked muddy between second and third base which is pretty strange considering that it doesn’t rain inside the dome.