Manoah deals, Kirk rakes, as Jays handle Brewers in three-game series opener

Stefan Luciani
FiredUp Network Sports Writer


Saturday, June 25, 2022

Final Score: 9-4

MILWAUKEE–In the words of Dan Shulman, Alejandro Kirk continues to be unbelievable. 


The 23-year-old catcher continues to dominate his at-bats terrorizing opposing pitchers as he did Friday night in Toronto’s series opener against the Milwaukee Brewers. The offence delivered a five-run second inning which would be more than enough to take the opener of the three-game set 9-4.


Alek Manoah went to the hill for Toronto and as usual put his place in a position to win, picking his ninth win of the campaign in a 6 2/3 outing in which he gave up just two runs on five hits. The performance sees him boast one of the league’s best ERAs sitting at 2.05.


Matt Chapman finally produced some long-awaited offensive results with a double that opened up the game in the second, clearing the bases to give the Jays an early 3-0 lead. The third baseman’s numbers not reflective of his offence as the 29-year-old has found himself quite unlucky of late with hard-hit balls not dropping for hits.


The longball continues to be a big part of Toronto’s game plan as a three-run seventh inning came as a result of a pair of shots from Cavan Biggio and of course, Kirk who roped one over the wall in left. 


This was the first time the Jays had battled against former first baseman Rowdy Tellez who was traded last season to the Brewers. 


Tellez recounted the process that led to him being sent to the NL Brewers, whilst maintaining his love for the organization. 


“Me and [Blue Jays GM] Ross [Atkins] talked when I got optioned and I told him, 'Hey, I love my organization, I love my team, I love everything about it here. But at some point I want to further my career,' " Tellez says. “I didn't specifically say, 'Hey, Ross, I want to be traded.' I did not say that. But I said, 'If there's a chance, I believe in myself more than being in triple-A."


Despite the loss, the Brewers still hold top spot in the NL Central with a record of 40-33 as the Jays continue to sit in the second spot in the AL East, miles behind the New York Yankees who continue to dominate the big leagues. 



OF George Springer (right elbow discomfort) remained absent from the starting lineup for Friday’s opener following his removal from Tuesday’s 7-6 heartbreaker loss to the Chicago White Sox. he did take BP before the game in the hopes that until he is ready for a full return, he will still be available to play off the bench if needed. 



The Jays and Brewers will go for game two of their three-game split on Saturday afternoon in Wisconsin. Yusei Kikuchi (2-3, 4.94 ERA) will get the ball amidst a tough stretch of outings for him. Following some clean starts at the beginning of the month where it appeared he was finally starting to find his form, Kikuchi has been hit hard bringing his ERA and WHIP for the month of June to 9.45 and 2.03 respectively, with opposing batters hitting a whopping .327 off of the Japanese lefty. Toronto will have their work cut out for them as they’ll face righty Corbin burnes (5-4, 2.31 ERA) who despite some inflated numbers on the month, is in the midst of another very respectable season starting off with some brilliant numbers early on.