Two games into the 2016 season and the Toronto Blue Jays are still undefeated. Game two may have been a little less comfortable than game one, but the Jays took down the Rays once again in impressive fashion.
Last night’s game was arguably decided by the Blue Jays’ bullpen and their impressive relief corp as Jesse Chavez, Bret Cecil, Drew Storen and Roberto Osuna combined for four innings of scoreless relief.
Aside from a few nervous moments during the fifth and seventh inning, that was about as deliberate and calculated as the Jays would like to use their bullpen. There were three other standout moments I’d like to give a little more attention to in “3 up 3 Down”.
You okay there, Kevin?
Kevin Pillar really, really wants to win a Gold Glove this year. Pillar went to work and immediately stated his case why he wants to be one of the best defensive centre fielders in the game with this crazy catch he made against the Rays.
Kevin Pillar, you okay man? pic.twitter.com/YXzXo7G8YU
— Ian Hunter (@BlueJayHunter) April 5, 2016
When Kevin Pillar took flight to rob a hit away from Steve Pearce, my initial thought was “this is bad; he has a concussion”. Pillar’s crash into the outfield wall surely had many holding their breath, but the collision looked much worse than it actually was.
Credit to Pillar for going all-out on that play, but he had a lot of people scared for a brief moment there.
Cecil Continues to Dominate
How long do you think Brett Cecil will continue to fly under the radar as one of the best relievers in all of baseball? He may not get a lot of attention south of the border, but Cecil continued his record-tying stretch of 38 appearances without allowing an earned run.
As Mr. Minor Leaguer noted, Cecil hasn’t allowed one of his runs to cross the plate since June 21st of last year … LAST YEAR! With one more scoreless appearance, Brett Cecil can set a new record for consecutive scoreless appearances.
At this rate, Brett Cecil should probably enter into the discussion when it comes to rattling off the list of elite relievers in MLB. Soon enough, he could be in the upper echelon of the Wade Davis’ and Dellin Betances’ of the world.
The Muppet Guys Steal Thole’s Home Run
Not really much to say here other than the fact that the older gentleman who snagged Josh Thole’s home run ball last night look an awful lot like The Muppets’ Statler and Waldorf (AKA the old guys in the balcony).
Honestly, the guy on the right in the very first picture looks like a dead ringer of Waldorf.
I suppose the home run call was some small form of justice after that damn kid in Kansas City pulled Mike Moustakas’ fly ball into the stands during last year’s ALCS.
Nice try, kid. pic.twitter.com/nuLbHmDIy0
— Ian Hunter (@BlueJayHunter) October 24, 2015
Feature image via AP Photo/Chris O’Meara