Quick Hits: Blue Jays Home Opener

Blue Jays fans left the SkyDome Rogers Centre last night drunk, pissed off and wandering the streets aimlessly looking for Billy Koch and his fantastic facial hair, hoping that he can still close games for us.

It was a tough loss guys, I hear you. BUT it was only game 4 of a 162 game season.

Let me shock you with this: we’re going to have tough losses this season…get over it.

Let’s take a closer look at last night:

The Good:

Henderson Alvarez

Man, I really love this guy. So calm, so poised, and so dirty with that fastball. For a 21-year old, he sure kept his emotions in check last night. After he gave up that home run to Dustin-don’t-call-me-shorty-Pedroia, I was really interested what his next pitch would be –  it was a fastball right down the plate. He’s obviously confident in his stuff, and won’t let a big hit throw him off his game.

 And I can’t tell you how awesome that is.

Next up for Alverez are the Orioles, who are in for a real treat. I’m really excited to see what this kid can do for us this year.

Colby Rasmus

 Colby, again, showed us why AA was so excited to sign him. His defense, base speed and quick bat were on full display last night. He’s still got some work to do at the plate, but he’s slowly turning into one of our most exciting players. When he turned 2B and dug in for that triple, I was at the edge of my seat cheering him on. This guy can flat out run, and I think we’re all going to enjoy watching him in Center Field for a long time in T.O.

Kelly Johnson

Although he looks like a suburban dad on his way to drive the kids to soccer practice, KJ has been really impressive at the plate so far. This guy won’t give up, and has such a nice approach when he’s facing 2 strikes.  His best highlight was the double play he turned with Escobar. When a guy can catch and release that fast, he can play 2B for me any day. I love the double play, even more than the homerun, and we have quite the middle infield to watch this season.

Our SPEED

You got to love how fast this team is! With the exception of Arencibia and Lind, we have some diiiirty fast base runners. I can’t remember a Jays team that had this many burners.  Speed on the bases is crucial. It creates more scoring chances, gets in opposing pitchers’ heads and keeps us out of some double plays.

 …just another reason why these guys are so fun to watch.

 The Bad:

Sergio Santos

Tough game for him. He’s had 2 save opportunities in this young season and has blown both of them. The fans had every right to boo him off the field, especially with those 25 blown saves from last year looming in their heads. But, let’s remember that this is a raw arm. A converted shortstop, Santos still has a lot to learn about pitching. Give him some time, he’s not going to blow 25 saves!

I think Santos’ problem last night was that he was too fired up, and was overthrowing his fastball. Location is key, and with time he’ll learn how to settle himself down and just pitch.

Jose Bautista

0-4 with a double play. Ouch.

Everyone has bad games, even the Great Jose. He’ll bounce back tonight, I have no doubt.

 

On a side note, I loved how fired up the fans were. The logos in the seats are AWESOME, and the RC looked great on TV last night…with the exception of that hideous carpet.

I’m looking forward to tonight, and to see what Drabek brings to the table. But for now, everyone needs to relax, it’s only been a week!

Toronto Blue Jays: Game 1 – Live Blog

Welcome to the Toronto Blue Jays Home Opener Live Blog.

Game time is 7.07pm EST so check back closer to the first pitch.

 

Thanks for reading everyone!  This Wednesday I’ll try to live blog the Vancouver Canucks Road To Hockey Immortality.  Until then………….

 

10.32pm: Lawrie grounds out, Thames strikes out. Arencibia grounds out and the Jays lose. On the plus side, we have Sergio Santos for another 3 years!

10.26pm: At least Bill Simmons is excited.

10.19pm: Another wild pitch. Another run scores. 4-2 BoSox. Then walks another.  Santos get pulled to a booing ovation. But at least fans are still there!

10.17pm: Single to RF brings in another and the Other Guys lead by 1. Rogers Centre is quiet and nervous.  Santos has had a terrible start as a Jay.

10:07pm: AGon sac fly scores Pedroia. Santos blows another save and 4 games into season, the Jays have a closer problem again. 2-2 top of 9.

10.04pm: Wild pitch and Pedroia advances to 3rd. No out.  Rogers Centre sounds like the ACC – anxious.

10.02pm: Santos is in to close out the game. Pedroia doubles and with no out, is in great position to tie the game.

9.58pm: Bautista grounds out to SS.  The important thing is he achieved everything without cheating.

9.54pm: On the other hand, Lind makes a great diving snag on a line drive. Mid 8.

9.45pm: Watching Youkilis charge to field Escobar grounder reminds me why he played 1B. #Safe

9.41pm: Another strike out, another DIRTY curve.  Oliver looked great after the Ortiz single.

9.38pm: Did you know Ortiz can steal bases? He Can’t.  GREAT throw by Arencibia FROM HIS KNEES. 2 out

9.37pm: Oliver gives up a single to Ortiz but then strikes out Cody Ross with a DIRTY breaking pitch. Get him some Tide with Bleach.

9.33pm: Anderson is out of the game as Darren Oliver starts the 7th inning in relief.

9.29pm: Lawrie chases a breaking pitch low and away and strikes out for the second time.  Doubront goes 1-2-3 and the Jays are up 1-0.  End of 6.

9.20pm: Pedroia goes yard. Jay 2, New England 1.

9.15pm: EE strikes out to end the 5th inning.  The people are getting restless. The need constant action, especially after decades of Leafs futility.

9.11pm: Bautista pop out.  People storm the field to sit in the dugout – Occupy Bautista.

9.08pm: Kelly Johnson battles an 0-2 count and singles up the middle. Joey Bats to bat! 1 out.

9.00pm: Some trouble. Man on 2nd and 3rd.  Lind makes a good play at first to get the innings second out. Then gets a grounder to 3B and Lawrie gets the out to end the inning.

8.50pm: …then he walks Arencibia but Rasmus lines down the 1B line straight to AGon to end the inning.  End of the 4th.

8.48pm: Doubront strikes out Lawrie and Rajai Davis.  Looks like he’s settling in. Jay 2, Satanists 0. None on, 2 out.

8:44pm: The commercial with the guy marooned on an island with nothing but a Kit Kat bar bothers me.  He’s going to die.

8.33pm: Jays Henderson Alvarez and Red Sox Doubront are both from Valencia Carabobo, Venezuela.  The most interesting part was listening to Buck Martinez try to say that.

8.27pm: EE singles to LF.  With 2 outs, runners are going on contact and Escobar makes it home easily. Jays 2, Overratted 0.

8.26pm: Jose flies to RF. Children are weeping.

8.23pm: Escobar walks and Rasmus on third.  Johnson gets jammed inside and the ball squirts to the pitcher.  Doubrount throws home, but Rasmus slides under the tag.  Safe all around and the Jays are up 1-0. Jose at bat.

8.19pm: Rasmus slides into 3rd with a triple.  1-out

8.15pm: Just saw a commercial for the movie Battleship.  If it’s based on the board game, somebody obviously never played the board game.

8.14pm: Alvarez literally blows a FB by Aviles to end the inning. That’s what 97mph can do for you.

8.12pm: Rasmus with a great diving catch to rob Salty-delicious from a single. 0-0, now 2 gone.

8.01pm: Lawrie up with no one on and 2 outs and singles to left.  Canada loves him because he baseball plays like a hockey player – with reckless abandon. As a base runner, he doesn’t look like a threat to steal, he looks like a threat to run up to you and eat you.

7:59pm: Just saw a fan on TV that looked like me: glasses, kinda chubby, easily excitable. But he was white.

7.54pm: Great 6-4-1 to end the inning.  Escobar with the backhanded stab and Johnson with a good hard throw.  Time for the bats…

7.52pm: Crisis averted.

7.51pm: Hazel Mae did the sideline interview with Honda Canada representative, which means: WHAT HAPPENED TO FORMER JAYS BALL BOY SAM COSENTINO!?!? #FreeSam

7.48pm: …and hits into a double play.  Chants of “Go Leafs Go” start.

7:47pm: Johnson with a great at bat.  Saw 8 pitches, full count, walks, Joey Bats up. And Rogers Centre Skydome is drunk with anticipation and Steamwhistle.

7.40pm: Felix Doubront, LHP, on the mound for Red Sox.  Escobar up.  Buck and Tabler, both catchers, love to talk about catchers.  If I didn’t know who Saltalamacchia was before, I do now.  And if I didn’t know it was a person, I would’ve thought it sounds delicious.  Good battle by Escobar, 8 pitches, worked a full count, flied out to CF

7.37pm: 1-2-3 inning, Alvarez looks solid.  Jays played a shift when AGon was up, Lawrie played behind second based.  Stats analysis at work.

7.31pm: Henderson Alvarez first pitch.  96mph, ball.  Here we go!

7.29pm:  It’s great to hear Buck Martinez and Pat Tabler call the game but a glaring omission – when introducing new Red Soz Manager Bobby Valentine they forgot to include, “He’s CRAZY.”

7.27pm:  Every Jays commercial gets you pumped up. And then there’s Delissio Rising Crust Pizza, and Dentyne Ice.  Make Chemistry? They don’t even use the right elements.  What Periodic table are they using?  Mr Right Now does not have the same amount of electrons of boron.

7.24pm: Ceremonial first pitch by Dr. Ron Taylor.  I have no idea who he is either.

7.22pm: O Canada gets started with a great rousing cheer and the crowd joins in the singing.  50k+ sounds awesome!

7.19pm: USA Anthem – good crowd, no booing, some singing, mainly bad singing.

6.37pm: Just heard on CBC Newsworld that beer in the Upper Deck (level 500) is being restricted to avoid drunkenness and the annual Opening Day Level 500 spectator fight.

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