Minnesota Secures Series in Toronto

July 25: Toronto 3, Minnesota 2

Roy Halladay nicely kept the Minnesota offense in check, but Kirby Puckett scored two with Joe Cronin driving him in both times. That was enough for a 2-0 Twins lead after seven and a half innings because Camilo Pascual was doing even better holding down the Blue Jay bats.

Rod Carew made an error to start the bottom of the eighth that allowed Gregg Zaun to reach. Tony Fernandez followed that up with a triple to cut the score to 2-1. Joe Nathan came in and struck out his first two men before Carlos Delgado unleashed his 21st bomb for the winning runs.

                  R H BB
MN  101 000 000 - 2 8  2
TOR 000 000 03x - 3 4  4

HR: C. Delgado (21)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
C. Pascual   7.0  2  0  0  4  7  
R. Halladay  7.0  2  2  0  1  3 

MN 52-45, TOR 44-53

July 26: Minnesota 6, Toronto 3

This time it was Toronto carrying a 2-0 lead late into the game. Jimmy Key was shocking the house for the first six innings by outdueling Johan Santana, who gave up two solo dingers. But a Roberto Alomar error in the top of the seventh seemed to unravel everything for Toronto and they watched Minnesota put up six runs in the final three innings

                  R H BB
MN  000 000 231 - 6 9  3
TOR 001 100 001 - 3 7  3
HR: J. Bautista (16), G. Zaun (2)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
J. Santana  6.0  2  2  2  1  5  
J. Key      7.0  4  3  0  0  1 

MN 53-45, TOR 44-54

mauerJuly 27: Minnesota 6, Toronto 0

The Doyle Alexander magic seems to be slipping away in his last two starts, which have been the shortest outings of his season. He could have used plenty of magic in this one since he was going up against Walter Johnson, who tossed his second straight shut-out and allowed just three hits.

Joe Mauer has struggled with the bat this season (.304 wOBA), but is getting hot of late and bashed four hits and a homer. Sam Rice collected three hits, and four other Twins had two-hit games. Mauer and Kirby Puckett both have four straight multi-hit games.

Minnesota took four of six from Toronto this season.

                  R  H BB
MN  023 000 100 - 6 17  0
TOR 000 000 000 - 0  3  5

HR: J. Mauer (4)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
W. Johnson    9.0  0  0  0  5  6  
D. Alexander  3.0  5  5  1  0  0 

MN 54-45, TOR 44-55

Seattle & Toronto Split, Mariners Tied With KC For 1st

July 22: Seattle 4, Toronto 2

Seattle pounded 13 hits, including three from Robinson Cano and a dinger from Edgar Martinez, and Erik Hanson reeled off his third straight solid start.

                  R  H BB
SEA 201 001 000 - 4 13  1
TOR 000 100 100 - 2  9  5

HR: E. Martinez (10)

starters    IP  R ER HR BB SO
E. Hanson  7.0  2  1  0  2  5  
D. Stieb   7.0  4  4  1  0  3 

SEA 50-46, TOR 42-53

delgadowtfJuly 23: Toronto 17, Seattle 1

Seattle needed a spot start from Mark Langston, and it looked like a good game to have their sixth starter going since his opponent, Juan Guzman, has pitched more like a seventh or eighth man most of the year. But Guzman had it all working and cruised through eight innings, while Langston saw the first five Blue Jays batters in the third inning reach against him, at which point he was pulled. Mike Moore then came on and let the next six batters reach as well. Twelve Jays had traipsed around the bases before Moore finally got out of the inning.

Roberto Alomar reached safely five times and had two doubles, and Carlos Delgado, Jose Bautista, and Devon White all reached four times. Delgado swatted two jacks and moved up to 10th in the league in wOBA and runs created.

                      R  H BB
SEA 001    000 000 -  1  8  1
TOR 20(12) 100 02x - 17 19 10

HR: P. Bradley (2), C. Delgado-2 (20)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
M. Langston  2.0  7  7  1  4  2  
J. Guzman    8.0  1  1  1  1  7 

SEA 50-47, TOR 43-53

Toronto Tries To Get Back On Track With Series Win In Texas

020210-Roberto-Alomar-11July 19: Toronto 4, Texas 2 (10 innings)

With Roy Halladay’s innings count creeping a little too high, Shaun Marcum made a spot start in his stead. Marcum drew a tough opponent in a particularly nasty Yu Darvish who recorded a season high 13 strikeouts, but Marcum traded zeroes with Darvish for the first six and a half innings. Texas finally opened the scoring in the bottom of the seventh on hits from A-Rod, I-Rod, and Mike Hargrove (M-Har?).

But then Darvish faltered in the top of the eighth when Jose Bautista and Fred McGriff drew back-to-back walks. Jon Wetteland relieved Darvish, and proceeded to walk the next two batters as well to force in Toronto’s first run. An RBI groundout by Shannon Stewart then tied the game, and Toronto put across the winning runs in the top of the 10th against Francisco Cordero. Carlos Delgado started things with a HBP, Lloyd Moseby doubled, and Roberto Alomar drove them both in with a single.

                    R H BB
TOR 000 000 020 2 - 4 7 10
TEX 000 000 200 0 - 2 6  2

HR: none

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
S. Marcum   6.2  2  2  0  2  2  
Y. Darvish  7.1  2  2  0  5 13 

TOR 41-51, TEX 40-52

July 20: Toronto 5, Texas 1

Jimmy Key was wheelin’ and dealin’, allowing just a solo homer in seven strong innings. Gerald Perry on the other hand had a hard time locating the strike zone. Two of the six batters he walked came around to score, and Jose Bautista took him to the seats.

                  R  H BB
TOR 002 020 100 - 5 11  6
TEX 001 000 000 - 1  5  2

HR: J. Bautista (15), F. Howard (13)

starters   IP  R ER HR BB SO
J. Key    7.0  1  1  1  2  4  
G. Perry  7.0  5  3  1  6  0 

TOR 42-51, TEX 40-53

July 21: Texas 7, Toronto 3

The veteran version of Nolan Ryan that pitches for Texas seems to only get better as the season goes on. This was his first start of the year without allowing a walk, and there’s just not much stopping Ryan if he’s not handing out free passes. Josh Hamilton and Adrian Beltre also stepped up with big games to avoid a sweep. Hamilton sliced four singles, two RBI, two runs, and two stolen bases, and Beltre collected two singles and a dinger.

Doyle Alexander’s magical season finally hit a serious bump in the road as Texas slapped him around for seven runs in less than five innings. Seven earned runs was a season worst for Doyle.

Toronto had lost their last five series, going 3-13 in that stretch, before taking this set from Texas.

                  R  H BB
TOR 000 100 101 - 3  6  1
TEX 102 130 00x - 7 18  1

HR: A. Beltre (10)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
D. Alexander  4.2  7  7  1  0  0  
N. Ryan       6.0  1  1  0  0  8 

TOR 42-52, TEX 41-53

Texas Takes Two In Toronto

Nolan-Ryan-DeceptionLaunch-phaseJuly 15: Texas 2, Toronto 1

Two of the better starting pitchers in the Expansion Division faced off in a fine pitcher’s duel. Frank Howard provided both runs for Texas on a homer, the only two runs Doyle Alexander gave up in eight innings of work. But the Ryan Express gave up only one run in seven innings, and C.J. Wilson and Neftali Feliz combined to shutout the Jays in the eighth and ninth to seal the win for the Rangers.

                  R H BB
TEX 002 000 000 - 2 7  2
TOR 000 100 000 - 1 5  6

HR: F. Howard (12)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
N. Ryan       7.0  1  1  0  4  8  
D. Alexander  8.0  2  2  1  1  5 

TEX 39-50, TOR 39-50

July 16: Toronto 6, Texas 3

The two high-octane offenses got back to bashing a bit more the next day, with each club drilling a pair of homers. All four homers in the game came with the bases empty though, so it was actually a string of walks and singles in the fifth inning by Toronto against Fergie Jenkins that plated the winning runs.

                  R H BB
TEX 000 101 010 - 3 7  4
TOR 011 030 10x - 6 8  5

HR: J. Franco (11), R. Palmeiro (17), 
L. Moseby (10), E. Whitt (6)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
F. Jenkins  4.2  5  5  2  3  3  
D. Stieb    8.0  3  3  2  4  4 

TEX 39-51, TOR 40-50

July 17: Texas 8, Toronto 4

Toronto starter Juan Guzman’s terrible season trudged on in the rubber match, and he saw his ERA rise to 6.66. Manager Cito Gaston won’t say so publicly, but is surely frustrated at the lack of decent options for his rotation which has contributed to sticking with Guzman all season so far.

Texas’s Alex Rodriguez drove his 20th home run and collected four RBI in the game. A-Rod has been among the homer leaders all season, but his wOBA is still below average at .320.

The series win for Texas brought them into a tie for fourth with Toronto.

                  R H BB
TEX 003 040 001 - 8 9  2
TOR 001 201 000 - 4 5  6

HR: A. Rodriguez (20), S. Green (17), K. Gruber (4)

starters    IP  R ER HR BB SO
C. Hough   7.0  4  4  2  5  2  
J. Guzman  4.0  7  7  1  2  2 

TEX 40-51, TOR 40-51

 

Seattle Continues Roll, Toronto Continues Slide

July 12: Seattle 6, Toronto 1

Erik Hanson put together a strangely effective complete game for Seattle. He issued nine free passes to Toronto hitters, but somehow allowed just one run. Toronto accrued six singles but no extra base hits and stranded 11.

Raul Ibanez doubled and homered to raise his slugging percentage to .515. Ibanez has only 109 plate appearances, but is slugging at a rate similar to elite mashers like Jim Thome and Jimmie Foxx.

                  R H BB
TOR 000 010 000 - 1 6  9
SEA 100 010 04x - 6 8  6

HR: R. Ibanez (5)

starters    IP  R ER HR BB SO
J. Guzman  6.1  2  2  0  4  3  
E. Hanson  9.0  1  1  0  9  2 

TOR 39-47, SEA 41-45

grifmartJuly 13: Seattle 5, Toronto 3

Edgar Martinez was the man for the M’s and collected half of his team’s hits in his first four hit game of the season. His day included three singles, a dinger, two runs, and two RBI.

                  R H BB
TOR 000 011 100 - 3 7  2
SEA 100 210 01x - 5 8  0

HR: L. Moseby (9), S. Green (16),
E. Martinez (8), K. Seager (13)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
R. Halladay  7.0  4  3  2  0  3  
F. Garcia    6.0  3  3  2  1  3 

TOR 39-48, SEA 42-45

July 14: Seattle 8, Toronto 6

The Blue Jays bashed three homers in their effort to avoid a sweep, but it wasn’t enough. Toronto is scoring by far the most runs in the Expansion Division at 5.1 per game, but their struggling pitching and defense are giving up even more, a league-worst 5.6 per game.

Felix Hernandez was not particularly sharp for Seattle, but the Mariners hitters all had at least one hit and piled up eight runs to complete the sweep. The Mariners are on a 10-3 stretch and have the best run differential in the Expansion Division.

On the other side, Toronto now has seven straight losses since the All-Star Break. After being tied for first with Kansas City at the break, they’ve quickly slid down to fourth place and seven games back.

                  R  H BB
TOR 000 201 021 - 6  5  6
SEA 100 004 03x - 8 11  5

HR: F. McGriff (15), C. Delgado (18),
G. Zaun (1), R. Cano (8)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
J. Key        5.0  5  5  1  4  5  
F. Hernandez  7.2  5  5  2  5  8 

TOR 39-49, SEA 43-45

Tied For First Going In, KC Comes Up Huge With 4-Game Sweep of Toronto

July 8: Kansas City 7, Toronto 6

The Royals and Blue Jays split their 12 matches in the first half and also finished with identical 39-42 records atop the Expansion Division. Their second halves began with a four-game set in Kansas City.

Toronto jumped on Kevin Appier for four runs in the first two innings. Appier has a tough time with lefties to begin with, and the Toronto lineup stacks a ton of intimidating lefty bats whenever they face a right-handed starter. It all added up to a short, rough outing for Appier, but the KC bats started getting to Roy Halladay in the third inning. Willie Wilson, John Mayberry, Mike Sweeney, and Hal McRae all rapped hits in the inning to get within a run of Toronto.

Lefty Bud Black, KC’s longman, was stellar for five shutout innings, allowing the Royals to scratch their way to a 5-5 tie in the seventh inning. In the eighth, Frank White put them up by a run with his third homer of the year, and Greg Holland came in to slam the door in the top of the ninth. But pinch-hitting Shannon Stewart led off with a single, Tony Fernandez singled him to third, and Stewart came home to tie the game on a double play grounder.

The Royals wasted no time responding. Mayberry led off the bottom of the ninth with a single, Sweeney singled him over, and McRae singled Mayberry in for the walk-off win.

                  R  H BB
TOR 130 100 001 - 6 12  1
KC  003 100 111 - 7 14  2

HR: F. White (3)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
R. Halladay  7.0  5  5  0  2  5  
K. Appier    3.0  5  5  0  1  2 

TOR 39-43, KC 40-42

July 9: Kansas City 11, Toronto 4

Danny Tartabull crushed a three-run job in the first inning, and then all hell broke loose for Toronto in the bottom of the third. The Blue Jays fielders made THREE errors in the inning as six Royals batters paraded around the bases.

                   R  H BB
TOR 000 200 020 -  4  6  4
KC  316 000 10x - 11 14  3

HR: C. Delgado (17), S. Green (15), D. Tartabull (15)

starters        IP   R ER HR BB SO
J. Key         2.0  10  4  1  0  0  
B. Saberhagen  6.0   2  2  1  3  5 

TOR 39-44, KC 41-42

July 10: Kansas City 6, Toronto 5 (11 innings)

Like game one, the teams played a close, back-and-forth affair in game three. Tartabull hit a three-run bomb in the first inning for the second straight game, but Toronto came back to take the lead in the fourth inning by singling Danny Jackson in to submission.

A Willie Wilson double and George Brett triple tied it back up in the fifth, and then KC took a one-run lead in the seventh on a Brett double and Tartabull single.

Wade Davis came on to close the door in the ninth this time, but just like Holland in game one, couldn’t quite do it. Roberto Alomar singled, Stewart singled him to third, and Alomar came home to tie it on a Jose Bautista sac fly.

It stayed dead-locked until the bottom of the 11th. Wilson singled and stole second, and Brett knocked his third extra-base hit of the day with a game-ending RBI double. Wilson, Brett, and Tartabull each collected three hits in the game.

                     R  H BB
TOR 000 400 001 00 - 6 12  2
KC  300 010 100 01 - 7 13  2

HR: D. Tartabull (16)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
D. Alexander  6.2  5  2  1  2  6  
D. Jackson    6.0  4  4  0  2  4 

TOR 39-45, KC 42-42

July 11: Kansas City 11, Toronto 6

alex

Toronto rang up a 4-0 lead in the top of the third, but the tenacious Royals stormed right back to tie it in the bottom of the inning. Kevin Seitzer slapped an RBI single and Alex Gordon crushed a three-run bomb. The Royals took a two-run lead in the fifth, but an Edward Encarnacion homer tied it right back up in the top of the sixth.

The Royals ran away with it in the seventh and eighth though as Dave Stieb and Duane Ward struggled for Toronto. Gordon had a perfect day at the plate with a walk, two singles, a double, and a homer, and he collected seven RBI to lead the Royals to an impressive sweep that created a little separation for them at the top spot in the division.

Willie Wilson extended his streak of multi-hit games to eight.

                   R  H BB
TOR 103 002 000 -  6  9  3
KC  004 020 23x - 11 14  6

HR: E. Encarnacion (8), A. Gordon (4)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
D. Stieb    6.1  8  8  1  3  1  
M. Gubicza  5.0  6  4  1  2  1 

TOR 39-46, KC 43-42

Texas Takes Two To Toronto

June 30: Texas 8, Toronto 4

The Rangers had all the runs they needed by the middle of the first inning. They abused Juan Guzman for four walks and four singles to plate five in the initial inning. The Blue Jays started with a bang also, Fred McGriff blasting a three run shot against Gerald Perry in the bottom of the first, but Texas held their quick lead for the duration.

                  R H BB
TEX 500 000 300 - 8 9  4
TOR 301 000 000 - 4 8  1

HR: F. McGriff (13)

starters    IP  R ER HR BB SO
G. Perry   7.0  4  4  1  1  4  
J. Guzman  6.2  8  6  0  3  8 

TEX 36-43, TOR 38-41

Jenkins Fergie TR74-44_FL_NBL McWilliamsJuly 1: Texas 4, Toronto 2

Fergie Jenkins was sharp for Texas and did not allow an earned run in a start for the first time this season. A Julio Franco error did contribute to a couple unearned against him, but Jeff Zimmerman and Francisco Cordero shut out Toronto for the last three innings, and the Rangers bats were busy clobbering 13 hits, including at least one by each hitter.

                  R  H BB
TEX 000 010 210 - 4 13  3
TOR 000 002 000 - 2  6  2

HR: I. Rodriguez (10)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
F. Jenkins    6.0  2  0  0  2  4  
D. Alexander  6.1  3  3  0  2  3 

TEX 37-43, TOR 38-42

July 2: Toronto 6, Texas 4 (10 innings)

Nolan Ryan struck out a season-high 12 batters and deserved better than he got. An Ivan Rodriguez error extended the third inning enough for Carlos Delgado to smash a two-run homer, the bad range of his fielders contributed to a run, and then the Texas bullpen allowed an inherited runner in to tie the game in the eighth. When Fred McGriff came to bat in the bottom of the 10th, he already had two doubles in the game. He added a walk-off homer to his day to boost Toronto to their lone win in the series.

Toronto has earned the right to host game three of the upcoming All-Star series on July 5th. The game goes to the Expansion Division team in first place at the halfway mark, which turned out to be a tie between Toronto and Kansas City. The first tie-breaker, head-to-head records, didn’t settle the matter as the clubs split their 14 meetings. Toronto earned the All-Star game thanks to the second tie-breaker, runs scored in head-to-head games. The Blue Jays outscored the Royals 67-58 in their games. Boston will host the first two games in a July 4th doubleheader.

                    R H BB
TEX 200 200 000 0 - 4 7  2
TOR 012 000 010 2 - 6 8  3

HR: R. Greer (3), F. McGriff (14), C. Delgado (16)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
N. Ryan      7.1  4  2  1  1 12  
R. Halladay  7.0  4  4  1  1  4 

TEX 37-43, TOR 39-42