Encarnacion returns as Indians visit Blue Jays

Posted May 10, 2017

Marcus Stroman pitched six scoreless innings for the Blue Jays while Trevor Bauer continued his struggles for the Indians, allowed all four runs in six innings of work. Bauer issued three walks and gave up six hits, including a two-run homer to Ryan Goins in the bottom of the second inning. He is 3-0 with a 1.83 ERA in three road starts this season. He's everything we (expected).

Part of the reason for the Toronto Blue Jays' gut-wrenchingly slow start in 2017 has been the team's problems with their pitching staff.

"They played great. They outplayed us today, so they deserved to win".

As Blue Jays pitcher Joe Biagini wandered around the clubhouse following Toronto's 2-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays, a couple of his teammates serenaded him with chants of "failed reliever". That's just about as insane as doing it this season, but multiple disembodied voices on MLB Network Radio did just that prior to the season.

It will be a rough three days for Jays hitters if they fall behind early and have to mount a comeback against an a relief corps that ranks second in the league with 10.76 K/9 and first with a 1.90 earned run average. He has given up one home run with the bases empty; he has given up five home runs with runners on. They had won two games in a row only once before this season.

Of course, a year ago the Blue Jays lost the ALCS to the Indians, whom Encarncion signed with in January. To be fair, they made him a very reasonable deal to start the offseason, but when he declined they quickly replaced him with Kendrys Morales.

Indians put Kluber on 10-day DL with back issue
Francisco Rodriguez pitched the ninth, and allowed a pair of baserunners before retiring Francisco Lindor for his seventh save. In the star slugger's first game since being sidelined, the Detroit Tigers weren't taking any chances with his health.

In more roster news, MLB Trade Rumors reports that Mat Latos has cleared outright waivers, opting to return to triple-A Buffalo. He has never faced Cleveland before.

He is 8-16 with a 4.61 ERA in 37 games (36 starts) in his major league career. They are second-to-last in the AL in runs scored and OPS, a significant drop-off from an offense that led the AL in runs scored and home runs just two years ago. The second game of the series is set for 7:07 p.m. Tuesday at the Rogers Centre.

It was the first game between the teams since the Indians beat Toronto for the American League Championship a year ago in five games.

Carrasco will be making his seventh start of the season. After a surprisingly good 21 starts in 2015, he imploded in 2016, finishing with a 6.83 ERA and 5.82 FIP over six starts.

Bauer survived six innings, but the damage was done, especially given the Indians' recent inability to produce proficient offense. Cleveland logged seven hits and walked twice with Carlos Santana going 3-4 with the lone RBI that plated Yan Gomes. Diaz provides insurance while OF Michael Brantley recovers from a sprained right ankle sustained Sunday.