Tap’s MLB Playoffs Recap: Jays & Indians Use The Lumber
With the MLB Playoffs, I’m going to do a little differently than what we’ve done in the past. If a big moment happens like what the Giants did on Wednesday or the whole saga with Tuesday’s game, I’ll hope to have it blogged that day. When it comes to just the standard day of baseball, we’ll have a recap of sorts for you in case you spent your Thursday watching NFL which is you did, you were a dummy.
Indians 5 Red Sox 4
Player(s) of the Game: Cleveland’s bullpen – What should scare Boston fans is Terry Francona managed a beautiful game with his bullpen. He wanted to win this game badly. Bringing Andrew Miller in the fifth inning was the polar opposite of what Buck Showalter did on Tuesday night. Additionally, Francona brought in his closer, Cody Allen, with five outs to go, and he got the job done. We’ve seen with the Royals how a great bullpen can carry you to a championship.
Not Player of the Game: Xander Bogaerts – Rough outing for the young shortstop who has been slumping in the final month of the season. He had a runner in scoring position in two different innings, and he couldn’t deliver with the big hit. Bogaerts had three strikeouts in four at-bats on Thursday night. Wonder where John Farrell will put him in the order today.
Big moment: 8th inning – I know many people will point the three home runs in the third inning as what changed this game, but really, the 8th inning could have easily flipped the game in Boston’s favor. Brock Holt hits a homer and pulls Red Sox within one then David Ortiz doubled when Allen came into the game. Allen got Hanley Ramirez and Bogaerts out to hold the game at a one-run deficit.
Blue Jays 10 Rangers 1 Player of the game: Marco Estrada – For a pitcher who struggled a little bit at the end of the year, he came through in a big way on Thursday afternoon. Estrada went nearly complete with 8 1/3 innings with six strikeouts, no walks and only four hitsallowed. Estrada pitched great for Toronto last postseason, and it appears to be happening again.
Not Player of the Game: Cole Hamels – Rough, rough game for the supposed ace of this staff. If Texas falls again to Toronto, people will question why Yu Darvish didn’t get the ball in the first game since he’s been red hot to finish the season. Hamels fell apart with the second time through the Blue Jays order, and that’s not encouraging if this series goes deep.
Big Moment: Third inning – Blue Jays are so scary when Josh Donaldson, Jose Bautista and Troy Tulowitzki are all hitting the baseball. They jumped all over Hamels, and that was all she wrote.