Blue Jays continue sloppy skid as season-long losing streak hits four

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Rare is there a dull nine innings or more at Boston’s Fenway Park, a regular home to wild nights of big league baseball.

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And from the spectacular to the sublime, Wednesday’s latest divisional clash between the Red Sox and Blue Jays served up a full menu.

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Unfortunately for the visiting Jays, most of it was as unpleasant as the conditions as the visitors hit a sloppy low and season-long losing streak.

In the end, it was the Red Sox getting the upper hand — and often better bounces — in an 8-3 victory that took advantage of some ugly play by their division rivals.

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It was the third win in a row against the Jays in this four-game series, a turnabout from the season results a year ago.

And a fourth consecutive defeat has the Jays scuffling through an unsightly stretch that has seen them blow leads in each of those losses, including twice on a frigid and wet early spring evening at Fenway.

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They’re allowing runs in bad ways and far too many of them and reverting to the clumsy play that often plagued them last season.

The Jays threw this one away — almost literally, at times — committing a season-high four errors as well as a wild pitch and hit batter by starting pitcher Alek Manoah, who once again struggled.

The rain and wind that howled through Fenway late in the game didn’t help, but it was hard on the eyes for a team that had been in much crisper form for most of the first month of the season.

Meanwhile, the losing streak is the longest of manager John Schneider’s tenure and the way it has been going down won’t sit well. It’s also the longest losing stretch since the four-game dip from July 7-10 last summer in Seattle, the streak that precipitated previous skipper Charlie Montoyo’s firing.

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The downturn has hit the Jays hard and swiftly, considering they were riding a six-game winning streak and holding a four-run lead over Seattle on Sunday at the Rogers before things began to fall apart.

The Jays have now allowed 31 runs in their past five games.

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The Jays starter seemed to be cruising along nicely, not allowing a run through three innings and retiring Justin Turner to open the fourth. The next man up, Rafael Devers the laced a 112.5 mph shot up the middle that caught Manoah on the back of the left leg.

Manoah shook off the pain and convinced Schneider to allow him to remain in the game, but things soon started to unravel.

Manoah promptly threw a wild pitch, which allowed Devers to scoot to third and then score on a Jarren Duran double. A throwing error and a couple of hits later and suddenly the Red Sox turned a 2-0 deficit into a tie game.

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Manoah exited after five innings allowing eight hits and five runs (though just two earned thanks to a Santiago Espinal error.) He was less than sharp though, particularly after taking the come-backer, as he needed 103 pitches and had just three strikeouts.


Did we mention errors? The Jays committed four of them on Wednesday, a troubling veer from the improved defence the team has shown through the season.

The sloppiness rarely plays well, but can be particularly damaging at Fenway, where the follies are legendary.

And there was some bad luck in the mix as well, including a ground ball that Guerrero had lined up for a routine out only to see it take a wild hop to the left off the edge of he grass. That scored another run.

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How uncharacteristic were the miscues? The Jays, who slipped to 18-13, had committed just six combined in the previous 30 games.

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The Red Sox continued to show the Jays they will not be pushovers this year.

By winning three of the first four, the Sox improve to 7-3 in series play, including 5-1 at home.

Perhaps more notable, the Sox won their first series against the Jays — who thrashed them 16-3 in last year’s season series – since July of 2021 and the first at home since August of 2020.


Some superlatives on Guerrero’s sixth home run of the season and 110th of his career that came in the third inning and gave the Jays a 2-0 lead was as jaw-dropping as they come.

On a cold night with a stout wind blowing in, Guerrero thrashed a shot that soared well over the famed Green Monster and on its way to the Jays team hotel not far down the run. The mighty swat came on an 84 mph meatball of a changeup served by Red Sox starter Nick Pivetta and exited Guerrero’s bat at a blistering 110 mph.

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It is familiar showmanship from Guerrero, of course, who has now hit homers of 450 feet or longer nine times in his career.


With Manoah’s focus on getting his uneven season back on track, it was all business with Boston leadoff hitter Alex Verdugo.

The tiff was left to a war of words as neither appeared to engage during the three times they faced each other.

On Tuesday, Verdugo hinted that he wanted to talk to Manoah “one-on-one” to discuss the comments he made suggesting the Toronto pitcher disrespects his opponents.

As you would expect, there was no funny business as Manoah struck out the Red Sox leadoff hitter in his first at-bat.


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