Jays Roundup - Breathe In Breathe Out
Thursday, September 16 2004 @ 09:18 AM EDT
Contributed by: Pepper Moffatt
Tied to a wheel fingers got to feel
I spin on a whim I slide to the right
I felt you like electric light
Jays 3 - Orioles 0
- Spencer Fordin:
In baseball and boxing, the hit that hurts you is the one you never see coming. Toronto's leadoff hitter scored a flash knockdown with a fluke hit on Wednesday night, temporarily separating Matt Riley from his senses.
The home team's first batter buzzed Baltimore's starter with a bounder through the box, catching him right under the chin. Riley went down hard and stayed down for a few moments, but the Orioles revived him and got a tremendous pitching performance for their efforts.
- Gary Washburn:
Riley walked seven batters but allowed just one run and just two runners to reach third base. It had all the makings of a feel-good story toward the end of a another trying season for the Orioles, but they mustered nothing off Ted Lilly and Riley ended up with a hard-luck loss.
Yet, with the Orioles being out of the race months ago, the club is focusing on the prospects for next season. Riley has been an enigma the past few years and is trying to prove he belongs in the big leagues. Perhaps rising from that knockdown did something to help his case.
- Mike Ganter:
Lilly, who won for the 11th time this year, gave the Jays eight innings of solid shutout baseball backed by fine outfield plays from both Johnson and their rookie right fielder Rios.
Johnson nailed Javy Lopez trying to stretch a long single into a double in the second inning.
In the seventh, Rios gunned down a speed-challenged Rafael Palmeiro at the plate as he attempted to score from second on a two-out single by Jose Leon.
Rios charged the ball nicely and calmly threw home to a waiting Gregg Zaun who had the plate sufficiently covered.
Lilly (11-10) allowed six hits over eight innings. He walked two and struck out six. The lefty is 9-5 with a 3.05 ERA in night games this season.
Toronto scored two insurance runs in the eighth thanks to an RBI single by Carlos Delgado and a throwing error by Melvin Mora.
Justin Speier worked the ninth for his sixth save in 10 chances before a sparse SkyDome crowd of 19,942.
- Larry Millson:
After Johnson's leadoff hit, he didn't allow another until Delgado lined a single to right field with one out in the sixth inning. That moved Wells, who had walked, to take third base. But Rios grounded into a double play to end the inning, giving the Orioles a total of three double plays in the game.
The Orioles threatened in the seventh inning, but Palmeiro, who had doubled with two out, was thrown out at home by Rios when he tried to score on Jose Leon's single to right field.
It was Rios's 10th assist of the season.
- Allan Ryan:
In winning back-to-back outings for the first time since June 2 and 8, the team's lone lefty also served up 70 per cent strikes (78 of 112) but agreed that two other strikes helped immensely.
In the second inning, Johnson had gunned down Javy Lopez trying to stretch a one-out single into two bases (which, naturally, was followed by another single that now meant nothing).
And, with two down in the seventh, the score still 1-0, Alex Rios steamed a one-hopper to the plate from right that nailed Rafael Palmeiro trying to score on a Jose Leon single.
- Fordin Notes on a new batting line-up and a scheduling change:
If you planned on catching the Blue Jays in Yankee Stadium, your travel itinerary just got pushed up a day. Toronto's series in New York will run from Monday through Wednesday, as opposed to Tuesday through Thursday. That move was made to accommodate the Yanks, who still have a makeup game against Tampa Bay to get out of the way.
In a seperate issue, why did Mike Wilner get Rosh Hashanah off but Spencer Fordin still had to work? What's the deal with that?
- Ganter Notes on the scheduling change and a golf tournament:
The Blue Jays Care Foundation was the big winner in the team's annual ninth annual charity golf tournament on Tuesday.
The tournament raised $85,000.
Individually the big winners on the day were the foursome of pitching coach Gil Patterson, bullpen coach Bruce Walton, first base coach Joe Breeden and equipment manager Jeff Ross.
That quartet won the best-ball tournament with a score of 14-under-par on the tough King Valley layout.
- Now that Carlos Delgado is likely leaving the media seems to be treating him with a lot more respect. Case in point: Bob Elliott's "Last chance to see Carlos?":
There will be bidders for Delgado. You can't walk by a scout or a general manager without him asking about Delgado.
Is he healthy? As a horse.
Is he a leader? He leads by example.
Is he a good guy? Every father should hope his son has the same qualities.
Why didn't he waive his no-trade? Because, from July 30 until opening day the following year, he didn't want to play for three teams -- the Jays, Team A as a hired gun and Team B as an off-season signing.
Does he want to stay here? Athletes in the free-agent era are knocked for jumping from one club to another for an extra dollar. This guy was knocked for wanting to stay with his team.
I do agree with Elliott on the last point. Blasting Delgado for not waiving his no-trade clause was unnecessary.
- Many people have been impressed by the arm of Alexis Rios. In "Rios's rockets find target" Larry Millson indicates that Gregg Zaun is among the impressed:
The thing about Alexis Rios's throws from right field, Toronto Blue Jays catcher Gregg Zaun was saying, is how much they move.
But they always seem to find Zaun at home plate. Last night's throw in the seventh inning caught the Baltimore Orioles' Rafael Palmeiro at home to preserve a 1-0 lead and give the rookie right fielder 10 assists.
- I'm a little surprised we haven't heard more about Chris Carpenter from the Blue Jays press. Richard Griffin's "Jays whiffed badly on Carpenter" attempts to fill that void:
The Jays outrighted his contract to Triple-A on Oct. 4, 2002, knowing he would refuse and opt for free agency. If they had kept him on the 40-man roster, he could have filed for arbitration and won millions, even though surgery to repair a labrum tear would keep him out of action for most of '03. The budget didn't allow it.
"They didn't feel I was going to get a major-league contract," Carpenter recalled. "But, there were about five or six teams that were going to offer me a major-league contract, to give me the opportunity to rehab and come back and pitch for them. I came and talked to (Cards GM) Walt (Jocketty). I knew some of the guys on the team and knew they had a chance to win. It's a great organization."
- Tonight's 7:05PM EST start at the Dome: A battle of righties as RHP Rodrigo Lopez (12-8, 3.86 ERA) faces RHP Miguel Batista (10-11, 4.64 ERA).