Elite Prospects

Can short-handed Blue Jays get job done vs. lowly A’s?

The Toronto Blue Jays are 5-4 so far in their current 15-game stretch against teams with losing records.

Decent? Sure. Ideal? No.

The Blue Jays sure could use a sweep this week against the fairly terrible Oakland A’s.

It won’t necessarily be easy, though. After going much of the year without significant injuries, the Blue Jays had four regulars out for Sunday’s game in Colorado.

Here’s a look at the Blue Jays-A’s series.

Probable Pitchers

Monday, 4:07 p.m. ET / 1:07 p.m. PT: Toronto RHP Jose Berrios (9-10, 3.70 ERA) vs. Oakland LHP Ken Waldichuk (2-7, 5.92 ERA)

Tuesday, 9:40 p.m. ET / 6:40 p.m. PT: Toronto RHP Chris Bassitt (13-7, 3.81 ERA) vs. Oakland TBA:

Wednesday. 3:37 p.m. ET / 12:37 p.m. PT: Toronto LHP Hyun Jin Ryu (3-1, 2.48 ERA) vs. Oakland LHP J.P. Sears (3-11, 4.60 ERA)

All games on Sportsnet or Sportsnet NOW.

Latest on the Blue Jays

The Blue Jays (75-62) took two of three in Denver against the National League-worst Colorado Rockies over the weekend.

[brightcove videoID=6336542689112 playerID=JCdte3tMv height=360 width=640]

Toronto pulled out a win in the finale 7-5 with a two-run ninth in pouring rain. Whit Merrifield broke the tie with an RBI single and Ernie Clement followed with his third hit of the game to give Toronto some insurance.

The Blue Jays used five relievers after a 59-minute rain delay caused Kevin Gausman to exit following four innings, so the bullpen won’t be in great shape Monday.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. also chipped in with his team-leading 21st home run of the season, while recent call-up Spencer Horwitz hit his first career MLB homer.

The Blue Jays are 1.5 games behind the Texas Rangers and Houston Astros for the second and third wild-card spots.

Latest on the A’s

The A’s (42-95) jumped percentage points ahead of the Kansas City Royals in the race to stay out of the MLB basement with a three-game sweep of the playing-out-the-string Los Angeles Angels over the weekend.

Tied 4-4 heading into the bottom of the seventh Sunday, the A’s exploded for six runs to take charge in what ended up a 10-6 victory.

Rookie first baseman Ryan Noda continued a strong season with a two-run homer. He also reached base three times.

Another first-year player. second baseman Zack Gelof, was named American League rookie of the month for August.

Whether these two youngsters ever experience more team success in Oakland is a major question mark with the team trying to move to Las Vegas.

Injury Report

Shortstop Bo Bichette (right quad strain), third baseman Matt Chapman (right middle finger sprain), catcher Danny Jansen (fractured right middle finger) and DH/first baseman Brandon Belt (lower back tightness) all missed Sunday’s game.

[brightcove videoID=6336543188112 playerID=JCdte3tMv height=360 width=640]

It sounds like Jansen could miss the rest of the regular season. Bichette and Chapman could return next homestand, while Belt is a day-to-day issue.

Buffalo Bisons fans were very familiar with the starting infield for Toronto on Sunday: Catcher Tyler Heineman, Horwitz at first, Davis Schneider at second, Clement at shortstop and Cavan Biggio at third.

Clement Revenge Series?

Clement was claimed off waivers by Oakland from Cleveland last September and finished the season playing six games for the A’s, going 1-for-18.

[brightcove videoID=6336544273112 playerID=JCdte3tMv height=360 width=640]

Oakland released Clement at spring training this year before he signed a minor-league deal with the Blue Jays.

A native of Rochester, N.Y., he has given the Blue Jays a boost since being called up from triple-A Buffalo last week to help fill in for Bichette and Chapman.

Familiar Face

A’s infielder Aledmys Diaz played for the Blue Jays in 2018 after the St. Louis Cardinals traded him to Toronto in late 2017. The trade came after Diaz lost his starting shortstop job in St. Louis to brief Blue Jay Paul DeJong.

Diaz, 33, hit a career-best 18 homers in 2018 with Toronto before he was traded to the Houston Astros for right-hander Trent Thornton.

Season Series

The Blue Jays won two of three against Oakland in a June series at Rogers Centre. Berrios gave up two hits in six innings in a 7-3 win, while Bassitt had a no-decision (four runs in five innings) in a 5-4 loss. Toronto crushed Oakland 12-1 in the series finale, behind a two-hit effort by starter Yusei Kikuchi.

Scoreboard Watching

In good news for the Blue Jays, the Rangers host the Astros in a three-game series this week.

The wild card-leading Tampa Bay Rays are home to the Boston Red Sox, who are four games behind Toronto.

Up Next

After an off-day Thursday, the Blue Jays begin a 10-game homestand with a three-game series against the lowly Royals.

Related Articles

Back to top button