Shorthanded Blue Jays dropped by Red Sox

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BOSTON — The Blue Jays went to a proverbial knife fight at Fenway Park on Wednesday night with a plastic spoon.

Fielding a starting lineup that did not include Josh Donaldson, Jose Bautista, Steve Pearce or Kevin Pillar, the Jays predictably lost to the Red Sox 6-1 on a misty and cool night in Boston. Toronto batters managed just four hits in the game. The Jays also committed two errors.

Other than the fact they played 19 innings the night before, it seemed strange that neither Bautista nor Donaldson was in the starting lineup to face right-hander Doug Fister. Bautista is 7-for-20 (.350) lifetime against Fister while Donaldson is 5-for-8 (.625). The Bosox played 19 innings the day before as well and they started most of their top players. Then again, they are the hunt for the AL East title while the Jays are playing for pride, or whatever.

The Jays seem to want to have a look at some of their high-level minor-league players at the major-league level, starting guys such as outfielder Teoscar Hernandez and shortstop Richard Urena.

The Jays took a 1-0 lead in the first when catcher Miguel Montero walked with the bases loaded. The next batter, Darwin Barney, grounded out to leave three men on base.

Boston tied it in its half of the inning when Andrew Benintendi hit a grounder to second, scoring Eduardo Nunez from third.

Coming off the best start of his career on Sept. 1, Jays right-handed pitcher Joe Biagini was pulled with one out in the fourth for Tim Mayza after giving up five runs on six hits and three walks, including a two-run homer to Jackie Bradley Jr. in the fourth.

“Bad. That’s a short answer for ya,” said Biagini, when asked to evaluate his performance. “It’s a search for consistency. Consistency of release point, aggressiveness and all that good stuff. I feel like I was battling. But I feel like the ball got up there a little bit in that fourth inning.

“I mean, every game there’s something like that. There’s something,” Biagini added. “You have to learn how to make sure you do the best you can with what’s going on and the situation (i.e. weather). After a while, it gets kind of old saying that and that just adds to the frustration. I feel like I made some good pitches, but it just wasn’t as consistent as I would have liked. I think that’s just kind of the theme of this whole season for me.”


Acting Jays manager DeMarlo Hale said he won’t coddle the young September callups.

“I haven’t given them any message really,” said Hale. “I want to see how they react. They’re major-league players, so I think sometimes you can try to include too much or give too much information to players (and) I don’t want to paralyze them. I want to see how they respond on their own.

“So, I haven’t said much to them,” he continued. “We just want to evaluate their reaction, their work pre-game and situations in the game that come up, how they react. That’s my approach. I’m sure the individual departments — Luis (Rivera) with the infielders probably has looked at more personal input, and Leip (Tim Leiper) with the outfielders, especially with this wall (the Green Monster) in left.”


Bautista has struck out 147 times this season. The Jays record for a season is 159 by Jose Canseco (1998) and Kelly Johnson (2012) … The 19 innings Toronto logged on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning marked the third time in franchise history that the Jays went that long, the others being Aug. 10 2014 against the Detroit Tigers and July 1 2016 against the Cleveland Indians. The bullpen tossed 11 innings — the 12th such occurrence in club history. Matt Dermody threw a career-high-tying three innings in relief on that night, tossing a scoreless 13th, 14th and 15th.


The Red Sox were first in the AL East by 3.5 games heading into Wednesday’s game, but they were still getting ripped in the local media. Steve Buckley of the Boston Herald just hammered the home side in the wake of Tuesday’s report that the Red Sox used an Apple Watch to steal signs this season. Buckley was not impressed about the scandal, nor was he impressed that manager John Farrell and team’s front office didn’t support Hall of Famer/ turned Red Sox broadcaster Dennis Eckersley after the “insufferable whiner” David Price verbally abused Eckersley before a team flight to Toronto. Boston’s reputation as the toughest media market in baseball is well-founded. Imagine if this team wasn’t in first place.

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