Baseball is a very unique game. At times, it can also be a very bizarre game. Teams can win in very strange fashion, but they can also lose in equally odd fashion.
The 2016 Toronto Blue Jays have already been the recipients of some very odd losses this season. Six weeks in, and they’ve experienced about four of the strangest ways a baseball game could end … and not in a good way.
So for those who love to rehash the past, these are all the weird ways the Blue Jays have lost a game this year. If you really wanted, you could rank these losses in level of disappointment; but I’d say they’re all equally disheartening.
April 5 vs. Tampa Bay Rays – Jose Bautista’s Slide Into Second Base
The Blue Jays barely waited to get one of their more painful losses of the season over and done with. This game ended on Jose Bautista’s controversial slide into second base, which was ruled as violating MLB’s new slide rule.
Thus, the Blue Jays were charged with a double play and thus the game ended … even though the initial ruling on the field had the tying run coming in to score. After much debate, that play was overruled and the Jays lost.
April 20 vs. Baltimore Orioles – Passed Ball
Want to know what’s more painful than losing a game on a passed ball? How about losing a game on a passed ball in extra innings?
The Blue Jays were clearly running on fumes, as John Gibbons had to call upon rookie Joe Biagini to take the hill. But the Jays had their starting catcher on the bench in Russell Martin as he was experiencing neck spasms.
So there was Josh Thole … and the results were not very good.
April 25 vs. Chicago White Sox – Runner Interference
Of all the ways for the Blue Jays to lose, this was probably the strangest. They didn’t really do anything wrong per se, but since the ball in play hit Troy Tulowitzki, it was ruled as runner interference and was recorded as the final out of the game.
Apparently it’s the job of the baserunner to avoid getting hit by the ball, and Tulo did not … so it was game over. This is a long-standing rule, but this is the first time I’ve ever witnessed the Blue Jays lose in this fashion.
May 11 vs. San Fransisco Giants – Walk-Off Walk
The freshest wound of them all … the Blue Jays’ 4-5 loss to the San Francisco Giants in 13 innings. This one was particularly disheartening for several reasons.
First of all, the Jays were basically on the brink of losing the game in the ninth innings until Michael Saunders comes through with a clutch home run. And even though the Jays handed the game to the Giants on several occasions, they eventually accepted.
The Blue Jays’ lack of hits with runners in scoring position was ultimately their demise, but poor performances by several members of the bullpen certainly didn’t help. Ryan Tepera eventually walked in the winning run on four consecutive balls.