LOS ANGELES — There isn’t a Blue Jays player remaining that was on the team the previous time there was a visit to Dodger Stadium on the schedule.
And despite the beauty of the locale and the history of the place, it was an unsightly return to the field where the World Series trophy has been awarded to the visiting team each of the past two seasons.
In fact, it was ugly, bordering on embarrassing, as the young Jays were throttled 16-3 by the two-time defending National League champs on Tuesday night. It was an inter-league contest that got out of hand when starter Sean Reid-Foley imploded in the third inning and went downhill from there.
The inconsistent right-hander lasted just 1.2 innings (following opener Buddy Boshers) and allowed five runs on five hits and a pair of walks. The big damage came on a pair of home runs — first to A.J. Pollock and another to Chris Taylor — as the Dodgers put up five runs in the third.
That was merely the beginning of the barrage, however, an attack that included five home runs, 15 hits and seven walks.
It got so ugly and so out of control that the night ended with Jays manager Charlie Montoyo forced to go the humiliating move of using a utility infielder promoted from Buffalo earlier in the day coming on to pitch the eighth.
How a major-league team can begin a six-game West Coast trip with such desperation is truly a thing of wonder.
As much as Montoyo has been keen on his young hitters, he wouldn’t be human if he wasn’t getting frustrated with the pitching woes and, more specifically, the challenge of fielding enough competent arms to get outs on a nightly basis.
Quite frankly, the team doesn’t have anything resembling a major-league staff and the manager was hoping to get through Wednesday’s second game of the series with a so-called “bullpen day.”
Given how deep he went into that ‘pen on Tuesday, however, it could be a challenge. Montoyo had to burn through seven pitchers in the blowout loss as Reid-Foley, Neil Ramirez and Justin Shafer all contributed to multi-run innings early on.
And then it got silly. Really silly. Perhaps hoping to have something left for the rest of the series, Montoyo went to utility man Richard Urena — called up from Buffalo earlier in the day — to pitch the eighth inning.
It went about as well as you might imagine, which is to say awful. Urena allowed a double, a pair of singles, a home run and put another batter on board when he hit him with a pitch. Urena exited his pitching debut with an ERA of 36.00.
This just in: The Dodgers are good and certainly worthy of the best record in the major leagues. But against an opponent that allowed three runs or more in four of the eight innings they were at bat was unsightly.
Normally, we wouldn’t feel the need to offer an obligatory positive on a night like this, but there was certainly one of merit for the Jays. Despite the blowout loss, rookie Bo Bichette provided another pair of highlights. Undaunted by facing perennial all-star and three-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw, Bichette twice took the lefty deep, including a 423-foot blast over the wall in left on the second pitch of the game. Bichette became just the sixth player with a multi-homer game off of Kershaw and the first rookie.
He now has six home runs on the season, a 21-game stretch that has included both club and MLB records.
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