New York Yankees clinch AL East title with win over Toronto Blue Jays

Amid the eclipse of their own world by the ubiquitous orbit of Aaron Judge, the Toronto Blue Jays are quietly working toward big decisions and learning valuable lessons big and small.

Interim manager John Schneider’s off-inning machinations that helped block Roger Maris’ pursuit of American League record 61 home runs made a telling case study on Tuesday, when the star slugger walked four times in a 5-2 victory that won the AL East for the New York Yankees.

A four-in-five game losing streak by the Blue Jays last week made it a foregone conclusion, and the end of the ensuing three-game winning streak put a pause on their own path to lock in a wildcard spot.

Their magic number remains at three, pending the outcome of the Baltimore Orioles’ visit to Boston.

Playing errors and lack of fuss cost the Blue Jays

Jose Berrios threw better than a messy throwing line — five earned runs on nine hits and two walks, both umpired, in 5.1 innings — would suggest and his seven strikeouts were notable. His speed increased by nearly two mph across the board and at 97.3 he threw his hardest throw of the year.

A pair of misses from Bo Bichette in the fifth, one on a blooper from Anthony Rizzo to short right center in the fifth and a pitching error on a grounder from Josh Donaldson two batters later extended an inning that should have ended. complete without damage.

And maybe they contributed to a boring sixth two run when Aaron Hicks tore up an RBI double and then came back on Gleyber Torres’ second RBI single of the game.

Judge scored on two of his walks and maybe if his hunt for Maris didn’t soak up baseball’s global oxygen so much, the Blue Jays could attack him differently.

Either way, Berrios’ leap into the raw stuff is sure to give the Blue Jays pause, as the extra power is tied to playing if he can sustain it. At the same time, there will be a debate about whether to ride with him or sacrifice some advantages to rely on the reliability of Ross Stripling.

That Berrios outing in front of a crowd of 40,528 at the Rogers Center probably didn’t get answered one way or another, but it could very well alter some of the conversation.

John Schneider leaves a good impression as interim Jays manager

More instructive is the discussion of Schneider’s audacious call to intentionally walk Judge to load the bases in the 10th inning of Monday’s 3-2 victory. The Blue Jays could have easily stayed right with Anthony Bass, but instead brought in left-hander Tim Mayza to take on Anthony Rizzo.

The fact that it worked has boosted the club’s confidence in its pre-match planning processes, but more importantly it’s not the type of uncertain decision someone makes worried about their future.

John Schneider joined Sportsnet Fan 590’s Blair and Barker to discuss the team’s recent play, individual performances and some injury updates. Photo: Sportsnet.

To that end, general manager Ross Atkins before the match praised Schneider for his consistency and said, “We trust him because of the preparation, because of the collaboration, because of the communication. We want him to feel empowered to make decisions that may be perceived as potentially more risky. It’s exciting that he feels the confidence to make those kinds of decisions.

That bodes well for someone still wearing the interim tag, and when asked if that makes Schneider a long-term answer, Atkins gave himself enough wiggle room, but made it clear where to stand. found the lean.

« He’s definitely a long-term contender, and we continue to work and feel good about his leadership to date, » Atkins said.

“Whether or not it ends up being a manager is not our goal. Not because we don’t have the utmost respect for the work he has done and is doing, but more of our energy is focused on winning tonight and tomorrow.

For his part, Schneider said that since taking over from Charlie Montoyo, « I’ve realized that I love (the job) and I couldn’t think of a better place to be and I couldn’t think of to a better group to be with. The mind occasionally wonders when you’re sitting there at night or talking to your wife. But I’m focused on winning games and hopefully that continues to produce.


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