Last night had to sting for the Blue Jays. Up 2-1 in the bottom of the 9th inning, the Indians scored 2 runs to steal one from the Jays, all off an inside-the-park-homerun. These are big games, as both the Jays and Indians are jockeying for position. There isn’t much room for error in the AL East anymore. All three teams, the Orioles, Blue Jays, and Red Sox that is, aren’t all going to collapse at the same time. One? Sure that is extremely possible and likely. The Blue Jays don’t want to be that team who falls behind in the division. With the loss though, the Jays are still in a nice position up 0.5 games in the division.
Nevertheless, they would have had a small cushion if they didn’t blow last night. The Red Sox thumped the Tigers last night, to help the Indians and make things more difficult on the Blue Jays. Michael Fulmer had a poor showing, his worst start of the year at the wrong time. The Tigers aren’t struggling to make the postseason because of Fulmer though, let’s get that much straight.
The Blues Jays get Aaron Sanchez on the mound today, where another strong start is needed from him. The Jays have to forget about yesterday and move onto the next one. Baseball players, more than other sports I find can do that more easily. When you’re playing 162 games in a season, there are going to be quite a few bad beats, so they have dealt with it on many occasions. The Blue Jays are 6-4 in their last ten games and hold a record of 69-53.
The Indians are now running away from the pack, with their 70-50 record and 7 game lead over the Tigers. Football season is nearly here, and I know attention is going to shift there, but keep an eye on baseball as this is going to make for an exciting race to the end of the season. Any team can win in the postseason especially in baseball, but this year more than ever, it’s become increasingly difficult to pinpoint who the winner of the World Series is going to be.
Toronto Blue Jays vs. Cleveland Indians
Aaron Sanchez (12-2, 2.84 ERA) vs. Josh Tomlin (11-6, 4.14 ERA)
If there has been any sore spot for the Indians lately it has to be Josh Tomlin. Their pitching is going to be tested in the postseason, and I can’t say they have the best rotation. Pitching is so important in the postseason and it’s going to be interesting to see if it holds up for the Indians. Tomlin had a nice start to the season, but has regressed over the last month. It’s been tough going for him lately, posting a 9.37 ERA and 1.65 WHIP in his last three starts. Through that stretch he’s allowed a startling 17 runs.
Can you believe that Aaron Sanchez almost ended up in the bullpen? Sanchez in the bullpen might have signaled the end for the Blue Jays, but after some thought he’s still in the rotation. The most Sanchez has allowed in his last ten starts has been 4 runs, against the Kansas City Royals. In half of them, he surrendered 1 or no runs. Sanchez has been particularly impressive on the road, pitching for a strong 2.40 ERA and 7-1 record. I see the Blue Jays riding Sanchez today and putting last night in the past with a win on Saturday.
PICK: BLUE JAYS TO WIN -120