The Toronto Blue Jays took the lead in a counterattack again.
After a shocking 4 consecutive losses, they went on to win 2 games in a row and rose back to 3rd place in the wild card. However, the direction of the postseason is still foggy.
Toronto won 4-3 after overtime in a home game against the Boston Red Sox held at Rogers Center on the 17th (Korean time).
Toronto, which had overcome the shock of being swept in a four-game series by the Texas Rangers with a 3-0 win over Boston the previous day, recorded 82 wins and 67 losses, maintaining 3rd place in the AL East and jumping to 3rd place in the wild card.
On this day, Texas, ranked second in the wild card, bowed 1-2 to the Cleveland Guardians, reducing the lead against Toronto to 0.5 games. The Seattle Mariners, who were in 3rd place as a wild card, lost 2 to 6 to the LA Dodgers and fell to 4th place. Only 0.5 games behind Toronto. In other words, the three teams Texas, Toronto, and Seattle have two wild cards and are fighting within one game of each other.
On this day, Toronto starting pitcher Chris Bassett pitched 7 innings, allowing 4 hits, 3 walks, 5 strikeouts, and 2 runs, breaking away from his poor performance against Texas on the 12th (a loss of 9 hits, 5 runs in 5⅓ innings). Boston starter Chris Sale also did his part, pitching 6 innings, allowing 1 run, 2 hits, 2 walks, 10 strikeouts.
The game was a tight pitching battle. Both teams remained 안전놀이터tied at 0 until the 5th inning. The one who broke it was Boston. In the top of the 6th inning, Rafael Devers hit a two-run home run to left, taking the lead to 2-0. Devers pushed Bassett’s fourth pitch, a 93 mph fastball outside, over the left fence.
Toronto scored one run in the bottom of the 7th inning when Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hit a solo home run. Guerrero pulled a 78 mph slider outside Sale’s sixth pitch and flew over the left field fence. Guerrero hit the final 3-run home run in the bottom of the 3rd inning the previous day, and hit decisive long hits in 2 consecutive games, serving as a leading hitter for a long time. Home run streak for 3 consecutive games since the Texas game on the 15th.
Toronto tied the score at 2-2 with Dalton Basho’s triple in the bottom of the 9th inning, with 2 outs and runners on base, and sent the game into overtime. The two teams traded one run each in the 12th inning, and when Boston ended up scoreless in the top of the 13th, Toronto scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the 13th with two outs and third baseman Whit Merrifield’s infield hit to third base, bringing in Guerrero.
Toronto is now aiming for second place in the wild card by starting Ryu Hyun-jin on the 18th. Ryu Hyun-jin pitched well against Texas on the 13th, allowing 5 hits and 3 runs in 6 innings, but did not receive support from the batting line and suffered a loss. If Ryu Hyun-jin, who takes the mound for the first time in five days, leads the team to victory, Toronto will be able to further increase its chances of advancing to the postseason.
If Ryu Hyun-jin also achieves another quality start, he will be judged to be completely revived and will be able to secure an advantageous bridgehead in free agent contract negotiations after this season. Ryu Hyun-jin pitched in a total of 6 games against Boston, recording 2 wins and 2 losses, an ERA of 4.01, WHIP of 1.13, and hitting percentage of 0.259. His most recent appearance was in a home game on August 9, 2021, when he allowed 7 runs while allowing 10 hits in 3⅔ innings.
Boston’s starting pitcher to face Ryu Hyun-jin is right-hander Nick Pivetta. He has been in the bullpen and starting position this season, with 9 wins, 9 losses, and an ERA of 4.56.