June 23, 2012
Jays hope for a settled Chavez
By Ken Fidlin, QMI Agency
TORONTO - The Blue Jays are hoping that they’ll see a more settled Jesse Chavez in his second start today against Miami.
Chavez melted down in the third inning of his start in Milwaukee earlier this week in a game the Jays eventually lost 10-9, despite a big comeback. Chavez was one pitch away from getting out of the third when Carlos Gomez doubled on a 1-2 count that sent the inning spiralling out of control.
“Just having a chance to talk with him a little more over the past couple of days, we just want him to know that he’s going to get the ball and that he doesn’t have to be perfect,” manager John Farrell said. “He went out for the first two innings and took control of the game then all of a sudden he started to try to be too fine.
“There’s plenty of room (at Marlins Park) to challenge some guys to the straightaway part of the ballpark.”
RAJAI ON FIRE
In 21 games since Eric Thames was demoted to Las Vegas, Rajai Davis has solidified his hold on left field with a .318 batting average, a .375 OBP, a .470 slug and an .845 OPS. In that time frame, Davis has nine steals, 2 HR, nine RBI and seven runs and has provided a vital spark in the bottom third of the order.
“Rajai quietly goes along putting up a solid year and has been a force in a number of ways for us,” Farrell said.
“He’s done a really good job of getting a fastball early in the count and not missing it. I think that’s the result of a more consistent swing. We’re seeing the kind of hitter he was for two years in Oakland prior to coming here.”
Edwin Encarnacion took a Ryan Webb fastball on the upper left arm in the sixth inning Friday, his fifth hit-by-pitch of the year and second in as many games.
“He’s a magnet,” Farrell said. “Edwin is a little bit sore but able to go. He got drilled pretty good, right in the triceps (muscle).”
It didn’t seem to bother Encarnacion much, especially on his game-winning homer in the ninth Saturday.
Mark Buehrle: Career vs. Blue jays: 6-4, 2.64
Overall this year: 5-8, 3.82
Finesse is the name of the game for Buehrle. He has an extraordinary pitching IQ, throwing all his pitches — fastball, curve, slider, change for quality strikes — at any time in the count, often finiShing off hitters with his changeup.