Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/15/13
It’s not a role that any team relishes but it’s all the Blue Jays have right now. They can either be roadkill on some other team’s journey to the post-season or they can be spoilers. Given the option they’ll choose spoiler every time. In that context then Saturday was a good day. Colby Rasmus launched his 20th homer of the season in the seventh inning a two-run shot that overcame a one-run Baltimore lead and the Jays held on for a 4-3 win delaying but not derailing the Orioles quest for an American League wild-card berth. Baltimore is in the middle of a six-team battle — all separated by a scant 31/2 games in the standings — for one of the two wild-card playoff berths and each game over the next two weeks is going to be precious. Rasmus became the fifth Blue Jay to hit 20 homers this season and Toronto is the first MLB team to accomplish that. He hit Chris Tillman’s first offering with Moises Sierra already on first with a walk sending the O’s ace to his sixth loss in 22 decisions this year. That homer made a winner out of reliever Jeremy Jeffress who came on in relief after a solid six-inning performance by starter Esmil Rogers. Rogers was charged with all three Baltimore runs but also pitched out of a couple of jams along the way limiting the damage the powerful Orioles lineup can inflict. Rogers walked a couple of batters in the fourth inning and that was a bit of a wakeup call. “I told myself I had to make some pitches that I had to get out of that inning. I had to go at least six innings” said Rogers. Jeffress spent the year in triple A and has come back a much more polished pitcher with a 100-m.p.h. fastball.
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