Game Five of the Blue Jays ALDS series with Texas will go down as a game for the ages and like the Joe Carter walk-off game in the 1993 World Series, it’ll go down as a game that you will remember where you were when the game happened. It will also be a game that we will be telling our grand kids about someday.
It was only fitting for the Franchise’s best player to get the Franchise’s biggest home run in 22 years. Jose Bautista, who came through in the biggest moment of his career with his go ahead three run home run in the bottom of the seventh made sure to savor the moment as he pimped the hell out of it with the most epic bat flip ever.
Bautista’s homer was a part of one of the craziest innings perhaps ever. It all started in the top of the seventh with a runner of third and two outs Russell Martin’s throw back to Aaron Sanchez hit Sin-Shoo Choo’s bat and ricocheted towards third base, Home plate Dale Scott immediately ruled the play dead as Rougned Odor scampered across the plate from third. Texas manager Jeff Bannister came out to argue that the ball should have been considered live. The umpires converged and ruled that the play was live and indeed the runner was awarded home, and at the time the go ahead run. Some of the fans started throwing stuff on the field and according to PA announcer Tim Langton things got real close to being called a forfeit.
The call was the right call but what confused everyone was Scott calling the play dead, if he doesn’t call the play dead the crowd doesn’t go full on stupid on the play. The umpires were right to review the play and check the rules with New York after John Gibbons requested that they review it. Gibbons was probably right to play the game under protest. In all honesty it would have been interesting to see how they would have ruled on it had it gotten to that, chances are if the Blue Jays had lost and that play had been the deciding factor chances are the umpires would have needed a police escort out of town.
The Blue Jays were able to take advantage of three straight Texas errors in the bottom of the seventh to load the bases before Josh Donaldson hit a popup that just eluded Odor’s glove to tie the game at three. And then with runners at first and third Bautista hit the three run homer that was the dagger in the Rangers season. Before Edwin Encarnacion got a chance to hit Sam Dyson walked towards home plate and then yelled at Encarnacion which ended up clearing the benches. The inning would finally end when with two runners on Troy Tulowitzki would pop out but Dyson headed Tulowitzki’s way standing at home plate and it looked to me like Dyson actually made contact with Tulowitzki and yet again the benches emptied. When it was finally over the seventh inning had produced five runs between the two teams and had lasted 53 minutes.
Lost in all of this was the start by Marcus Stroman who gave the Blue Jays just what they needed as he went six innings while allowing two runs, before turning it over to Aaron Sanchez who worked the seventh and left with two on and one out in the eighth. With the tying run at the plate Roberto Osuna came on to strikeout Josh Hamilton and Elvis Andrus to end the eighth and worked a 1-2-3 ninth with a strikeout to Will Venable to end it.
Also lost in this game was Ryan Goins run saving play in the top of the sixth to steal a base hit from Andrus, if that ball gets through its a 3-1 game for Texas. The play was made even bigger when Encarnacion hit his game tying blast in the bottom of the half of the inning.
The Blue Jays will now face off against the Kansas City Royals in the ALCS, and for many Blue Jays fans this is the one match-up that they’ve been looking forward to since their memorable four game series just after the trade deadline.