As the Blue Jays made their way to Fenway Park for the last time this season fresh off a win at home on Wednesday, they probably couldn’t help but think about repeating their last trip into Boston. The three game sweep in July came only days after Toronto lost Jose Bautista and they were without Brett Lawrie for the first game. After looking anemic after the All-Star Break, the Jays managed to score 28 runs over three games, while holding the Red Sox to only 11.
Since then, both teams dug deeper into the basement of the AL East. At this point, they could very well be fighting each other to avoid last place. Happily for Toronto though, Friday night saw the return of both Brett Lawrie and J.P. Arencibia to the Jays’ lineup.
Jays’ starter Henderson Alvarez showed a better command over his fastball than in his last few starts. His sinking fastball was on the lower border of the strike zone all night and had more than one player in the Boston lineup thinking twice about the pitch’s location. Over sixth and a third innings, Alvarez gave up only one run on four hits, but only struck out one while walking two.
The bigger story of the night was Toronto’s power game. Edwin Encarnacion, Moises Sierra and Colby Rasmus all hit multiple-run homeruns. Rasmus’ came in the ninth inning and offered the Jays’ much needed insurance runs, making the score at the time seven to three. The Jays also managed to score without hitting the ball out of the park. Brett Lawrie led-off the game with a double and advanced to third on a groundout by Rasmus. Encarnacion hit a sac fly to centre to score Lawrie from third. In the fifth, Rasmus led-off with a triple and was later brought home by Yunel Escobar’s single to right.
Of slight concern was Toronto’s inability to turn the double play multiple times in the game, although between the pitching and defense they managed to get out of any tough situations. The defensive highlight of the night was a spectacular and run saving catch by Rajai Davis in the bottom of the seventh. With a run already having scored and a runner on first, Scott Podsednik hit a fly-ball to deep left field. Davis tracked the ball and made a leaping grab against the green monster, throwing his glove back over his left shoulder.
Aaron Laffey will take the mound on Saturday night for Toronto, as the Jays try to make it five in a row over Boston. The Red Sox will send Daisuke Matsuzaka to the mound. In his last start at home against Toronto in June, Matsuzaka was given a no-decision after giving up a run over five and two-thirds innings.
Game time is set for 7:10 p.m.
About the Author
Written by Amanda Tallon
Self-professed baseball nerd, blogger, writer, tweeter, learning addict and once colour commentator. Celebrating over twenty years of love with the Toronto Blue Jays and the beautiful game of baseball. I also contribute to thegalsgotgame.com, a sports website for business women by women.