Home sport Bassett’s scoreless outing gives the Blue Jays offense a comeback against the Padres

Bassett’s scoreless outing gives the Blue Jays offense a comeback against the Padres

by admin

July 20, 2023, 4:35 p.m

TORONTO — In the sixth inning of Thursday’s game at Rogers Center, John Schneider ran to the mound to chat with right-hander Chris Bassett. The Blue Jays manager did not travel to the workbench, so the purpose of the trip was to talk to the rookie.

The stakes were as high as possible. Runners are on first and third, one out and the Blue Jays clinging to a 1-0 lead. With left-handed batter Jake Cronworth reaching home plate, Toronto center fielder Tim Maesa was ready to step into the arena and watch the conference on the mound from afar.

The four Blue Jays players plus receiver Alejandro Kirk stood on the mound as Bassett, glove covering his mouth, spoke to his manager. Less than a minute later, Schneider returned to the dugout, leaving the ball in the hands of Bassett.

Whatever was said or discussed, Bassett certainly made it through, pulling the Padres’ next two batters to escape congestion and preserve the narrow margin in what eventually became a 4-0 Blue Jays victory in front of 43,196 fans. Bassett’s conversation and his ensuing pitch ended in a defining moment in the contest that helped the Blue Jays avoid a three-game sweep and saw the club finish at home with a 4-2 record.

Bassett earned a “W” with his scoreless performance in which he allowed only four hits and one walk, and struck out five times in six innings pitched. The right-hander lowered his ERA for the season to 3.92 and improved his career driving to 121.2, a number that ranks third in the American League. He was followed by Maiza, Eric Swanson, and the Blue Jays’ Jordan Romano—who performed for the first time since coming out of the All-Star game at quarterback—who each delivered impeccable relief.

The Blue Jays needed every ounce of what Bassett could give, given the state of his offense he’s been in for most of this weekend. The lineup did not record an overtime hit during the series until Vladimir Guerrero’s solo home run against Luis Garcia Padres in the seventh inning on Thursday. Kirk added a two-run homer in the eighth inning to make it 4-0 and give his team some breathing space on the court.

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The Padres’ left-hander Blake Snell, who is second in the National League with a 2.67 ERA, was erratic in the afternoon imitating mostly a swing artist. He walked seven and five batters in his innings pitched, but surrendered only once. At one point, 10 of the Blue Jays’ first 17 batters made it to base, but the club only had one run to offer.

George Springer walked in the first inning but was eliminated when Bo Bechet entered a double play. with a walk but was quickly put out at first base. In the second, Whit Merrifield located the center and stole second base, but was caught trying to steal third.

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Right winger Jordan LeBleu put the Blue Jays on the plate with an RBI single in the second, but the club also squandered key chances when they were blocked on bases loaded in the fourth and two batters in the fifth.

While these failures are not easily forgotten, they will not be there as major talking points, thanks in large part to Bassett’s work on Thursday.

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