SEATTLE – The first reunion amongst Robbie Ray and his previous Toronto Blue Jays teammates considering that the defending American League Cy Young Award winner remaining by way of free of charge agency took place in the T-Cell outfield Thursday afternoon.
Ray, pants tight as at any time, slapped hands and traded hugs, major smiles all all over. The grind of a a few-home-city season in 2021, notably in Buffalo when a sizable portion of the club stayed in the similar resort, solid enduring bonds. “It was like a bunch of brothers just hanging out,” he recalled. “And I chat about it all the time – that was a distinctive team we had. It failed to matter who it was, on a nightly basis it was five, 6, seven, 8 of us hanging out ingesting pizza, taking in wings in Hyun Jin (Ryu’s) space or my space, just being fellas. It introduced us closer with each other for sure.”
Among the the strongest of those connections was the a person he designed with Alek Manoah, which designed their substantial-octane duel received 2-1 Saturday evening by the surging Seattle Mariners, all the additional persuasive. The two exchanged chirps for the duration of that outfield gathering Thursday – “I’ve been joking with him that it is going to be like a father-son reunion out on the mound,” mentioned Ray – prior to going at each individual other just before a rowdy split-loyalty group of 41,210.
While Ray did not get as deep in the sport, he finished up surrendering a single run fewer than Manoah, limiting the destruction in opposition to him to a George Springer solo shot in the sixth immediately after escaping a bases-loaded, none-out jam in the fifth unscathed.
Manoah, mixing in his sinker far more aggressively versus a lineup showcasing five still left-handed and swap hitters, place zeroes by way of 6. Then J.P. Crawford opened the seventh with a single against the change and the latest acquisition Carlos Santana, somebody who would have built some perception for the Blue Jays, unloaded on an -1 heater middle up for a two-run shot.
That was the difference, as the Blue Jays loaded the bases with two out in the ninth but Diego Castillo induced a recreation-ending groundout from Matt Chapman, dropping the people to 1-5 on their West Coastline swing. They’ve now dropped 8 of their earlier 9, two of people losses coming considering the fact that a players-only assembly right before Friday’s 5-2 loss in 11 innings, underlining the growing urgency close to the club.
Manoah much more than did his portion more than 7.1 innings of brilliance, holding the Mariners to two operates on a few hits and four walks with 7 strikeouts. It produced for an remarkable bounce again from an odd outing against the Athletics in which he authorized a season-higher 5 operates but in all probability deserved greater.
Ray, meanwhile, held the Blue Jays to a few hits and two walks whilst placing out 6, an outing reminiscent of the dominant type he confirmed throughout his fantastic Cy Young period, even if he bought there in a various way. Throwing mainly sinkers, a pitch he incorporated this year so he could assault the outer edge of the plate against righties and not be wholly dependent on significant four-seamers and small sliders, he was in cost via 4 ahead of walks to Alejandro Kirk and Teoscar Hernandez and a Lourdes Gurriel Jr. solitary loaded the bases.
Ray recovered by hanging out Matt Chapman, obtaining Santiago Espinal on a delicate flare to 2nd and Ramiel Tapia on a weak grounder to small.
The Blue Jays made a run at trying to keep Ray but finally handed Kevin Gausman a $110-million, five-year agreement a day before the lefty agreed to a $115-million, 5-calendar year offer with the Mariners. Amongst the added $5 million and the difference in taxes among Washington State and Ontario, the hole among the specials is wider than it looks so the 30-12 months-previous moved on.
“Everybody talks about the money and you want to you want to be in a condition where you can established your relatives up for a long time. Honestly, that was 1 of the principal aspects in coming right here as significantly as that goes,” said Ray. “And then my household, we enjoy the Seattle location. We are an outdoor family. We are often mountaineering, we’re often performing things outdoors. And this was the perfect location for us to do that. It just appeared like the appropriate match.”
The very same applies to the Blue Jays with the similarly gifted Gausman, who won’t start Sunday as his ideal ankle proceeds to heal after remaining struck by a Wander Franco rocket very last weekend. Tuesday is now his up coming target date, with Max Castillo envisioned to element prominently as a starter or bulk arm in his location in the finale.
That it will be a salvage mode afternoon at the conclude of what is been a tricky trip to cap a stretch of 31 online games in 30 times isn’t excellent, but these types of is lifetime for the Blue Jays suitable now. Manoah designed only a person oversight but right now, which is 1 as well numerous.