In their return to the Rogers Centre, the Blue Jays beat the Royals, 6-4. It was the first home game for Toronto in Canada since September 2019.
Daniel Lynch, coming off a brilliant start against Detroit, pitched really well. Considering all that he was up against - a really good lineup playing in front of a juiced crowd - his line of 6.0 innings and three runs will definitely play. He scattered seven hits and got into some early trouble by giving up three runs in the first three innings, but he really settled down after that. He’s also proving to be pretty efficient, getting 18 outs on 107 pitches. He had a good percentage of strikes, despite appearing to be quite erratic early in the game. His poise was good. I think there were a lot of positives from it.
Down 3-0, the Royals chipped away a bit, scoring a run in the fifth on an RBI triple by Nicky Lopez. In the next inning, Salvador Perez hit a towering homer that narrowly snuck over the left-field wall, making it 3-2. This is already homer #26 for Perez, who is just one off his career high with more than two months left in the year.
But the knockout punch came in the seventh, when Domingo Tapia loaded the bases with none out. The Blue Jays wound up getting three runs out of it, as Tapia got a double play but then gave up a two-run bomb to Bo Bichette. 6-2. Game over.
Kansas City did draw a little closer in the eighth, when Lopez scored from first on a hilarious throwing error where Lopez’ hustle was really impressive. Merrifield hit an infield single to short, the throw went wild, and Lopez kept hustling all the way to the plate to catch the Blue Jays completely off guard. Anyone else know of a time where the Royals had a guy score from first on a single against the Blue Jays? Anyone?
Anyway, Whit Merrifield got his MLB-leading 26th steal, putting him at second with none out, but the Royals couldn’t score him. Michael A. Taylor singled in a run in the ninth to make it 6-4.
In their last 23 games in the Rogers Centre, the Royals are 5-18. The bad Royals teams lose there. Even the good ones lose there (2-5 in 2015). They’ve only won one series up there in the last decade, and that was in 2017. It’s not great.
The record is 45-57. Maybe Jorge Soler would have helped. (That was a joke)
Tomorrow, they’ll look to avoid losing another series in Toronto when Mikey Minor, who Dayton Moore said he didn’t want to trade (did he mean nobody else wanted to trade for him?), takes on Alek Manoah. The game starts at 2:07 pm.
Oh, and a Dayton Moore take: what a total fool for thinking this team will compete in 2022. They won’t. And I don’t think John Sherman is going to put up with it, either. Whit Merrifield has to hate this team for squandering his prime and then not giving him the chance to play for a winner. By the time this team is competing, he’ll be out of his prime, and they’ll have wasted the opportunity to increase that window by not trading him. Scott Barlow (stop falling in love with relievers) and Carlos Santana (he’s going to be 36 and Nick Pratto is right there) should have been no-brainers, but... Dayton! So dumb.