It was not a duel of pitchers. 28 hits, 9 walks and 1 hits lead to 18 combined rounds. This is the kind of day you’d expect from an old park in Arlington, when scale box dimensions lead to marathon games in the 110-degree Texas sun. Now that Rangers have played at the world’s biggest Home Depot, scoring has been curbed a bit. Not enough to slow this chain of bats jays.
The Jays usually struggle with cunning soft ejaculation, but they’ve been all over the Kohei Arihara from the first. Nine Blue Jays reached the board, and five of them hit the ball at over 98 mph. Among the three who didn’t, were Bo Bichette (a 94-mph fly ball raised to the right field gap to double) and Matt Chapman (walking). They ended up scoring four runs, and it could have been more.
It’s a good thing crime was going on tonight, because Kevin Gussman didn’t really have it. He ceded a solo ball to Marcus Simin and Cory Seeger walked past three shots by Adulis Garcia that put Rangers in one spot.
The jays are not finished. George Springer and Bechet walked in a second, but were stranded. In the third inning, Cavan Biggio also walked, Danny Janssen followed with a single, and Santiago Espinal tore a ball that hit the glove of third baseman Josh Jong and hit the corner, scoring Bigo. Raimel followed tapia with a towering shot into the right stands, flanking three more. Returning to the top of the rankings for the third time, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. He walked and scored Bechett’s second goal of the night. He told everyone that the Jays scored 5 in the inning, making it 9-3.
Amazingly, Texans stuck with Arihara to start in fourth. He gave up another double, Biggio, and Homer deep to the left of Danny Janssen, making it 11-3. The next hitter, Santiago Espinal, lined up one back over the hill approaching Charlie Browned Arihara, and finally convinced the Rangers to make a change. John King took over and got a double play and another ground to finish the inning. He stayed at the top of the sixth without letting in another runner.
Meanwhile, Gusman managed to settle the matter for a while. Over the course of rounds two through five, he broke four singles and hit six, never giving up on any other rounds.
The next action came at the bottom of the sixth. Rookie Josh Jong had a double ahead, and Sam Huff hit a goal to score, cutting the Jays’ lead to six. It was enough for John Schneider, who invited Zach Pope to try to finish the inning. Gausman’s last streak was pretty bad, 5.1IP with 5 runs on 8 hits (2 homers) and walked, hit 9. The hits were there as usual, but his command seemed off and two of his fouls were crushed on the foul moment. Pop also suffered. John Smith counted, and Bubba Thompson hung the hitter over the third base bag that bounced into the gap between Bichette a short distance away and Raimel Tapia at the left, allowing Smith to score and Thompson to reach third. He also scored, on Semien RBI’s single, to make it 11-7 before Corey Seager’s double play ball ended the half.
Facing Dennis Santana for seventh, Jays had a chance to add after Springer tied for a lead, but Vlad got into a double game. Bichette added his third double of the night, but the Jays couldn’t capitalize on that. In the home half of the inning, Anthony Bass allowed one blob for Josh Lowe but nearly two and got out of it unharmed.
Jonathan Hernandez VIII worked in Texas. He battled his lead, Matt Chapman and Tapia walked and allowed Jansen’s solo, but he got some hits and ground to prevent Toronto once again from putting it away. Adam Semper struggled a bit as well in the halfway, dropping one song for Haddad and hitting hitter Kole Calhoun (at Thompson), but he managed to hit Semien and get ground from Huff. Tim Maeza is called in to try to get Seager left and manages to get the helicopter on Vlad at the start for the third exit.
Nine was quiet. Brett Martin tossed Guerrero and hit Bichette and Kirk, while Mayza hit Lowe, got Garcia to the floor, and got a Leody Taveras backer that he was somehow able to kick in his glove and flip to the first for the final exit.
Jays today: Springer (0.100), Bichette (0.122), Espinal (0.257) and Jansen didn’t have the number because the game was pretty much over by the time Homer hit but 4/5 with a bomb worth a cookie.
Not much: Gussmann (-0.137)
The series concludes tomorrow at 2:35ET.
Jays hasn’t announced a start and will likely go with Christmas Day (EDIT Sunday Morning: They announced Trevor Richards will start. He started once this year, allowing one hit over 2.0IP during the Pittsburgh series, and started his career as a rookie in Miami.) Texans will start their ace, Martin Perez (10-6, 2.82).