“Well, I’d be crazy not to,” manager John Farrell replied. “Given today’s performance, with two more hits, for him to tie it if possible in New York would be very fitting.”
Vizquel, 45, began his career in 1990 with Seattle and said that he is going to retire at the end of this season.
“I’m a bit disappointed that I didn’t get it here in my last at-bat (he ground out to first),” Vizquel said. “I guess that’s how it goes. Whenever the manager lets me play again I will have that opportunity.”
Currently Vizquel is tied for 42nd on the all-time hit list and he considers it to be an honour to be sitting just one hit back of Babe Ruth.
“Not even in my wildest dream was I going to think that you could bring the name of Babe Ruth next to mine and compare hits,” Vizquel said. “I guess when you play for a while (he’s in his 23rd season), every time you score a run, steal a base, get a base hit, they start bringing some of the numbers that you aren’t even aware what’s going on.
“When I started the season I wasn’t really thinking about numbers. I just wanted to finish my career strong.”
No sooner had the applause died down for Vizquel’s RBI single when rookie Adeiny Hechavarria drilled Jon Lester’s first pitch into the second deck in left for his second home run of the season. The Jays added two more in the eighth.
Brandon Morrow started for the Jays and logged six shutout innings, holding the Red Sox to four hits and walking one. He also struck out three.
It was one of Morrow’s better efforts against Boston, a team that has given him nothing but trouble in the past. Going into the game, Morrow was 1-3 with a horrendous 9.53 ERA vs. the Red Sox in 15 appearances, including seven starts.
A high pitch count limited his innings on Sunday as he needed 102 to get through the six innings.
A FOR EFFORT
The Jays may have lost the first two games of the series but it isn’t for a lack of trying. So says both Farrell and general manager Alex Anthopoulos.
When a team isn’t hitting and is running the bases in ragged fashion it looks flat and that’s how it’s gone for the Jays. But it isn’t due to the fact they have accepted losing at this late point to the season is the cry from up on high.
“No, no. I think our guys are doing the best they can right now,” Farrell said. “We have some guys that are struggling, whether that’s some guys that we‘ve anticipated to be core contributors offensively. We’ve got a few guys in our lineup that aren’t producing as they’ve done, as their track record has shown. Coming back from injury (Lawrie and Arencibia) is part of that. Some swings aren’t as consistent as they were pre-injury but I can tell you this, no one is liking the situation we’re in.”
Anthopoulos also didn’t have any beef with his players regarding the issue.
“Not at all. I think guys are playing hard,” Anthopoulos said. “It’s just a matter of some guys aren’t hitting, some guys haven’t pitched, guys get cold and obviously J.P. and Brett just got back from rehab and they didn’t get a tom of rehab games. I don’t see that (accepting losing) at all. It’s not to say we accept it (losing) or are proud of it but I don’t see that at all.”
Is it hard, then, for teams that aren’t in the post-season run to keep focus at this part of the season?
“We communicate regularly on what is being evaluated and that is shared individually and collectively as a team,” Farrell said. “Evaluation continues to go on and there’s still competition here. Not everyone in that room is guaranteed a spot next year.”