A 2-2 Monday night on the farm was highlighted by strong performances from two recent former Jays.
The Fightin' Blue Jays and the Fightin' Orioles begin round three at Camden Yards. Toronto completed a 4-2 homestand with series victories against New York and Boston to get to .500 on the season at 16-16. The Orioles are 13-16 after losing five of six in New York, including three of four to the Yankees. Their road trip was extended to nine games after the Baltimore riots forced their series against Tampa Bay to be played at Tropicana Field instead. The O's did take two of three against Tampa as the 'home team'.
Only two teams played on Sunday and both loss. Buffalo lost a tight game for the third straight day, this one a 1-0 loss that wasted a good start from Andrew Albers. New Hampshire took a 4-0 lead but lost 11-4.
Only one win on Saturday. Emilio Guerrero hit a home run in the bottom of the eighth for New Hampshire to break a 4-4 tie. HC Hobson had hit a three run home run in the first to give New Hampshire a three run lead but that had disappeared by the eighth, setting up Guerrero for the big hit. Both Buffalo and Lansing lost in extra innings, Buffalo for the second night in a row. That loss for the Bisons wasted Randy Wolf's best start of the season. Anthony Alford reached base five times in Lansing's loss. Dunedin were bombed as Justin Shafer couldn't get out of the first inning in his home debut.
Boston makes its first visit to the Dome in 2015. The Jays are 14-15, a half-game ahead of the 13-15 Red Sox and four games behind the Yankees for first place in the American League East. Toronto is coming off a series victory against the Yankees at the Concrete Convertible.
Three games on the docket. Lansing won, but both Buffalo and Dunedin lost. John Stilson made his season debut, while Miguel Castro got roughed up in Buffalo.
A whole pile of quick ball games on Wednesday for the affiliates, with some top pitching prospects taking the hill. The affiliates went 2-3. Some bonus stuff as I chatted with Keith Law about a prospect he thinks will be a big leaguer for the Blue Jays. I tried to cleverly weave some Bob Dylan references into this one, but most likely you'll roll your eyes (and I'll roll mine).
A no-win Tuesday on the farm as the affiliates went 0-3 despite one of them racking up 19 hits and seven walks. Another game saw an ex-Jays catcher homer twice. Lansing's game was rained out. That will be made up as part of a doubleheader today.
The affiliates came out on the right end of the score in two of their three games Monday with one of them going 13 innings. Buffalo had a chance to put their feet up and relax.
The New York Yankees come to Toronto for a big three game series. It is early in the season but this week is setting up as a pivotal week for the Jays. Along with the Yankees, the Red Sox come to town this week and these six games could say a lot about this team. A 4-2 week, or better, will steady the ship. A 2-4 week, or worse, will raise the angst level to extra high.
There were some exciting games on the farm Sunday. Brad Glenn hit a three run little league home run in the eighth to turn a 2-0 deficit into a 3-2 Buffalo win. Steve Delabar got the win. New Hampshire came from behind to send their game to extra innings. They scored five runs in the eleventh, including a three run home run from Jack Murphy, and held on to win by a run. Dunedin won easily led by Jayson Aquino. Lansing let a late lead slip away for the affiliates only loss. Conner Greene pitched great for six innings but let it go in the seventh.
All of the affiliates lost on Saturday. Three of them lost easily and the opponents registered double digits in hits. New Hampshire were the exception, they lost a tight one 2-1. Shane Dawson and Taylor Cole pitched OK. Tim Locastro had the only home run, an inside the park job.
Only one win on the farm Friday. That win was in Dunedin where Jeremy Gabryszwski pitched well and Matt Dean hit a home run. Former major leaguer Doug Gwosdz was known as eyechart, Gabby should be eyechart jr. In Buffalo Luis Perez was lit up for six runs in relief negating a thirteen hit attack including two more from the IL player of the month for April, Chris Colabello. Matt Boyd pitched 5.1 shutout innings, no walks, three K's, but Cory Burns out of the bullpen gave up two runs and took the loss. Lansing lost -1, Jonathan Davis came off the DL and went 3-4. Today we are using milb.com for our game reports.
The affiliates won two out of three Thursday as Buffalo stormed back for a come-from-behind victory while Lansing stayed ahead from inning one on. Both the Bisons and Lugnuts share identical 14-7 records. New Hampshire had the night off.
The road trip from hell concludes with a four-game series in Cleveland. The Jays are 1-5 so far on this 10-game excursion after dropping two of three to Boston to fall to 10-12 on the season and guarantee a losing record in April. Like the Blue Jays, the Indians are in last place in their division with a 7-13 record in the AL Central. The Tribe have not won a series since their opening three-game set in Houston where they took two out of three. They have lost their last four three-game sets two games to one, including a series loss to Kansas City at Progressive Field.