J-Bop belted a three-run shot in the sixth inning that sparked the Blue Jays to overcome a 4-0 deficit and led them to a 7-5 victory over the Astros at the ’Dome on Saturday, aka “The Rapture.”
We’re all still here. And Bautista is still hammerin’ balls the way those Bible thumpers who think the apocalypse is now smack “the good book.” J-Bop ended the scoring in the ninth with a solo shot, his major league-leading 18th. Yunel Escobar also went yard, plating the winning run with a two-run blast in the seventh that put the Jays ahead 6-4. Escobar was instrumental to J-Bop’s big hit in the sixth when he grounded to shortstop, a ball Houston’s Clint Barmes let slip through his legs. That spelled doom for the ’Stros.
In a way the outcome makes up for Friday night, when the Jays blew a 2-0 lead in the eighth inning, costing the winless Reyes that oh-so-coveted first victory. Jon Rauch blew the lead and Frank Francisco gave up three runs in the ninth to take the 5-2 loss. Thanks to Bautista and Escobar, though, the sting from that one didn’t last so long.
J.P. Arencibia had the day off Saturday. Expect him back behind the plate on Sunday when the interleague series closes out with a gem of a pitching matchup.
The Jays (23-22) are 1.5 games behind AL East-leading Tampa Bay, but are in fourth place in the division.
SUNDAY: Astros (Wandy Rodriguez, 2-3, 3.45 ERA) at Jays (Kyle Drabek, 3-2, 4.32 ERA), 1 p.m., Sportsnet-1
2011 J.P. Arencibia Statistics
Game 43: Win one for Ryley