More April Bad Craziness
11 Hits. 4 Walks. 3 Runs. The Jays lose by one. Yep, it’s April again…Shaun Marcum threw another gem except for two pitches to Guerrero, but the Jays hit into another 3 double plays and tortured a eerily quiet home crowd all night.
Guerrero’s first shot came on a curveball (Marcum’s worst pitch by far) down the middle, and his three-run blast on a fastball that was probably meant to back him off the plate. Classic Vladdy- 6 inches inside, and he still manages to hit it out of the yard.
Boner of the night goes to Aaron Hill and Alex Rios. With runners on first and second, Scott Rolen swung at a pitch that got past the catcher and rolled to the backstop. Instead of taking off and making the umpire send him back, Hill figures it’s a foul ball and drifts halfway to third looking kind of unsure. Then he realizes that the play is still live and breaks for third, almost too late and almost a huge blunder in making the first out of the inning at third base.
Even after the throw went to third, Rios retreated to first base, keeping himself out of scoring position and decidedly in double play position. Complain away about the Jays best two hitters not being able to deliver a sac fly in a crucial situation, but a pure mental error cost that run as well.
For a little torture, check out the fangraph story of the game. After Rios’ single, the Jays were actually clear favorites to win this game! Of course, win expectancy doesn’t account for a team hitting .220 with runners in scoring position…
Now that he’s gone a day without hitting a homer, I think I can safely return to the assertion that having Wilkerson lead off is batshit insane. Not that the lineup order really means dick all, but he is literally the last guy who should be getting the most at-bats and setting the table. He’s now hitting a cool .167 with the Jays, and has an OBP of about .250. He’s not even fast in case you dig that at the top. And what’s more, Gibbons apparently likes him there so much that when David Eckstein returns off the DL, he will bat 9th.
That’s partly because Gibbons has liked slotting outfielder Brad Wilkerson and second baseman Aaron Hill in the Nos. 1-2 spots, respectively…
Outfielder Brad Wilkerson has been serving as the Jays’ leadoff hitter — a role Eckstein filled earlier this season. It’s likely that Eckstein would slide back into the No. 9 hole, which is where he was hitting at the time he was sidelined.
Shoot me. What’s with taking early season slumps without a grain of salt, while treating other players like they haven’t declined despite years and mountains of evidence to the contrary? (See: Stewart, Shannon). Eckstein is going to get on base unless there’s something physically wrong with him…Wilkerson is just wishful thinking.