Saturday, July 26, 2008
Was there ever any doubt?
Well, yeah. Quite a bit, actually. Heading into the bottom of the 10th, I had basically written a post bemoaning the fact that the Jays were up to their old tricks, stranding runners and letting pitchers off the hook (I'm looking at you, Miguel). I had some venom for Cito too, emptying the bench for pinch runners early and asking Scott Rolen to lay down a sac bunt - which he hadn't done in, oh, four and a half seasons.
But thankfully, Voodoo Joe came through in the clutch. And by coming through, I mean putting a good swing on the ball, at least. If Suzuki (I don't go for this first-name basis garbage), one of the top defensive outfielders in the last decade, makes that play - tricky, but definitely makeable - we're looking at a brutal 4-3 loss and an end to any momentum the team had. Instead, it's 4 wins in a row (and 5 of 6), and a possible catalyst to one of those runs we keep saying the team needs to go on. So here we are.
Brandon League was throwing peas
Our favorite surfer dude pitched a clean 8th, catching Raul Ibanez looking on a particularly nasty 2-seamer. League had filthy stuff and was pounding the strike zone, reminding us of the guy who we thought would be the late-relief set up guy for BJ.
I've been saying to anyone who will listen (which is nobody, to be perfectly honest) that the team was lacking a real shut-down right-hander out of the pen (apologies to Jason Frasor, Shawn Camp, and Brian Wolfe - see what I'm saying?), and League showed tonight that he has the potential to be that arm. Maybe some of that Cito "you're my guy" magic will rub off on him as it so clearly has on Young Adam Lind (2 more hits tonight, and I'm wiping that ugly strikeout on a JJ Putz breaking ball down and away from memory).
If nothing else, the broadcast team at RSN gives us a few of these every game. For the record, I like Jamie Campbell probably more than most, although his standing in my books has taken a big hit this season with his well documented hysterics over walk-off losses.
Tonight's entry comes courtesy of Jamie and the non-confrontational Pat Tabler, who usually gives us the least amount of material to work with:
Discussing Brandon League:
Campbell - "He throws in the high 90's, and we've seen him hit 100 on a few occasions."
Tabler - (awkward pause) "......not this year."
On deck for Saturday
David Purcey (0-1) goes for the Jays in his first start since his recall, facing RA Dickey (2-5) and his big fat knuckler. Interesting matchup here, as I'm not sure what to expect from either guy. Here's hoping Purcey is relaxed and settles in for a quality start, because with Marcum sure to be on a pitch count again Sunday, the 'pen could use a breather. After all, there's Meatloaf at stake.