Blue Jays fall apart after disastrous 7th and 8th inning rallies by the Astros

The Toronto Blue Jays collapsed in Wednesday night’s tilt against the Houston Astros, giving up seven runs in the 7th and 8th innings en route to a 9-2 defeat.

Yusei Kikuchi (4-8, 4.12) was on the bump to start for the Blue Jays, Ronel Blanco (8-3, 2.53), who had thrown a no hitter against Toronto back on April 1, was given the nod for the Astros.

Both Toronto and Houston’s starters had very identical nights on the mound. Kikuchi threw 5 2/3 innings, giving up two runs over five hits, walking two and striking out five. Blanco also threw 5 2/3 innings, giving two runs on four hits, walking two and striking out four. Both pitchers finished with no decisions.

The Blue Jays struck early, scoring in the bottom of the 1st. Bo Bichette got things rolling with a sacrifice fly to give the Jays a 1-0 lead.

The Astros got that run back in the top of the 3rd, when the ever so dangerous Yordan Alvarez struck with an RBI double to tie the game at one run apiece.

Alvarez would strike the Blue Jays again. In the top of the 6th, the silver slugger lead off the inning with a solo blast to give the Astros a 2-1 lead.

The Jays would tie the game in the next half of the inning. Daulton Varsho singled and was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double, but not before Bichette scored to tie the game at two.

The Astros would burst through in the top of the 7th. Jose Altuve singled in Chas McCormick to give Houston a 3-2 lead. A Yainier Diaz single would plate two runs, extending the lead to 5-2. Jeremy Pena was then hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, pushing another run across and making it 6-2.

Houston would continue to pile on the runs in the next inning. Alvarez and Diaz would continue to be a thorn in Toronto’s side as they struck with an RBI double and single to extend the Astros’ lead to 8-2. A Jake Meyers fielder’s choice would add an extra run to give Houston a 9-2 lead.

The score would hold as the Blue Jays fell to the Astros, 9-2. Toronto’s bullpen struggles continued and were certainly showing in this game, both Zach Pop and the newly acquired Jose Cuas both struggled, giving up a combined seven runs between just two innings.

Injury update, Blue Jays closer Jordan Romano underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair an impingement in his right elbow. Romano is expected to be shut down from any throwing for a minimum of six weeks and it is uncertain when he will make his return.

Chris Bassitt (7-6, 3.24) will take the ball for Toronto as he will face Framber Valdez (6-5, 4.11) for Houston as the Blue Jays look to split their series with a win against the Astros tomorrow afternoon.

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