Doc, Jays come up empty

It seemed like the ideal scenario. Send the Doc to the mound and put an end to the losing streak. But that wasn’t the case last night despite a spectacular performance by Roy Halladay, who worked 7.0 scoreless innings, allowing just five hits while striking out six before exiting for a pinch-hitter in the top of the eighth.

It was likely a tough call for manager Cito Gaston, who had watched his ace throw a gem for seven innings from the visitors dugout in Atlanta – his first time back since his Blue Jays captured the 1992 World Series against the Braves.

But for all his prowess on the mound, Halladay – like most AL pitchers – is a liability at the plate. With a runner on second and two out in a 0-0 ballgame, it simply made sense to lift Halladay and give the club a chance to score the game’s first run.

Unfortunately, Joe Inglett, in his first game back since being called up from Triple-A, failed to put the ball in play as he struck out looking – perhaps the worst way to go down with a runner in scoring position. Jesse Carlson, who took the mound in Doc’s absence, proceeded to give up the first run of the ballgame in the bottom half of the eighth, and the Blue Jays headed for the showers with their season-high fourth straight loss.

Casey Janssen will look to right the ship tonight as he makes his first start of the season for the Blue Jays. In fact, the right-hander hasn’t made an appearance for Toronto since Sept. 24, 2007. He missed all of 2008 after undergoing surgery for a torn labrum.

Since being sidelined with a different shoulder injury this past spring, Janssen has pitched nearly flawlessly during his rehab appearances in the minor leagues. In 23 2/3 innings, the right-hander has pitched to a 0.76 ERA in five outings, allowing just two runs while striking out 17 between Class-A Dunedin and Double-A New Hampshire.

It seems like just yesterday that the Blue Jays, at 27-14, had matched the best start in franchise history through 41 games. In fact, it was just four days ago. In the meantime, though, they’ve lost four straight and, while they still hold a slim ½-game lead over the Red Sox in the AL East, they’re in need of a victory to turn things around quickly. They’ll look to do so against former manager Bobby Cox and his Braves tonight at 7:05 …

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: