Stroman gets little support in second start

April 3rd, 2019

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays’ bats stayed quiet on Tuesday night, and right-hander Marcus Stroman was saddled with a loss because of it.

Stroman was charged with two runs on nine hits, with one walk and five strikeouts over 5 2/3 innings in the Blue Jays’ 2-1 loss to the Orioles. Baltimore’s Jonathan Villar was responsible for most of the damage with an RBI triple in the sixth. Rowdy Tellez hit a solo home run in the bottom of the ninth but it was too little, too late.

“It was a pretty tough day,” Stroman said, a few hours after his close friend Kevin Pillar was dealt to the Giants. “I lost one of my brothers in KP. I can’t honestly say enough good words about that dude. Just someone you want on your team. Someone who showed up every day ready to play, regardless of any injury.

“True grinder, true professional. He put his body on the line each and every day, so to not have my guy behind me is pretty tough. But at the end of the day, it starts to become pretty normal to you. It’s a business and you’re reminded of that every day.”

Toronto’s offensive numbers the first time through the order went from bad to worse during the second game of the Baltimore series. The Blue Jays entered play on Tuesday 1-for-46 the first time through their batting order, and they proceeded to go 0-for-8 against Orioles starter Andrew Cashner.

All of the damage off Stroman came in the top of the sixth inning. Former Blue Jays outfielder Dwight Smith Jr. sparked the rally with a leadoff single, and he later scored on the triple by Villar. Stroman then surrendered an RBI single to Trey Mancini before he induced a double-play grounder, and then came out of the game.

Stroman deserved a better fate, but the lack of run support meant he was saddled with his first loss of the season. Toronto’s Opening Day starter threw 63 of his 101 pitches for strikes, but there wasn’t enough offense to pick up the slack. The Blue Jays’ record on the season fell to 2-4 and they have one game remaining on the homestand before heading to Cleveland and Boston for a six-game road trip.

“We’re not having good swings right now,” said Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo, whose team has lost back-to-back games vs. the Orioles for the first time since 2017. “But I know one thing for sure, this team is better than that.

"I don’t know when it’s going to happen, but we’re going to hit. I know that. It’s a proven record. The stats are right there and we’re going to hit. Of course, right now we’re not hitting, so hopefully it starts tomorrow.”