The worst part: Alex Rios scored the winning run.
A-Not got on base in a 1-1 game when John McDonald picked a horrible time to commit his first error of the season, sailing a ball over the head of first baseman Juan Rivera to lead off the ninth. It should’ve been a routine out and the Blue Jays shouldn’t have had any trouble with the bottom of the White Sox batting order. Instead, Rios took second on the play and moved to third on a Marc Rzepczynski wild pitch and then scored when Juan Rivera and Rzepczynski couldn’t connect on a grounder to first base from speedy Juan Pierre. No. 9 hitter Gordon Beckham, who was hit by a pitch, scored from second on the play, giving the White Sox an insurance run in their 3-1 victory over the Jays at the ‘Dome on Thursday.
Rivera backed up to field the ball, which was hit just inside the first base foul line. When he turned to head toward the bag, Rivera’s eyes ballooned with the sight of Pierre racing closer. Rzepczynski (2-1), meanwhile, wasn’t close to where he should’ve been. Rivera’s errant toss plopped off the pitcher, who laid on the ground holding his head as Beckham ran around third and headed home.
It was another ugly loss – the Jays’ third straight – and dropped them down to 24-26 as they began a seven-game homestand.
Yunel Escobar had launched a rocket to the left-centerfield bleachers in the sixth, tying the game with his fifth homer. Brandon Morrow pitched great, hurling seven innings and allowing only one run on four hits. He took a no-hitter into the fifth, when A.J. Pierzynski broke it up with a one-out single to left.
J.P. Arencibia was 0-for-3 with a walk. He had a work out behind the plate and continued to show great improvement in his defence.
FRIDAY: Mark Buehrle (4-3, 3.92 ERA) at Kyle Drabek (3-3, 4.34 ERA), 7 p.m., Sportsnet.
[By the way, for anyone who gives away their tickets, can you please, please, please attempt to hand them off to someone who knows a little bit about the sport? Section 123 featured a conversation that began with, “I’ve heard this Bautista guy is supposed to be pretty good?” and ended with, “What time do you think we should leave? Nine?” And then, of course, there’s the mid-inning cavalcade for ice cream from the BlackBerry-pickers who on this night decided to look up from their text messages for a moment and with Morrow throwing a no-hitter through four innings realized they’d rather get a snack than watch him pitch. Help us.]
2011 J.P. Arencibia Statistics
[Thanks to Julia Pelish for the copyrighted pics.]
Game 49: No Post (Jo-Jo lost again, what’s there to say?)
Game 48: Well, that sucked
Game 47: Kings of New York
Game 46: A bomb, a bummer and the Bombers
Games 44 & 45: Apocalypse Not
Game 43: Win one for Ryley
The first DJPATCW: Opening Day Hero