Blue Jays-Athletics: Toronto Wins In Dramatic Fashion Over Oakland

Adam GreuelSenior Analyst IAugust 5, 2008

Some clutch hitting and a little luck helped the Jays win the second game of a four game set against the struggling Oakland Athletics. The final score would end up 4-3 in the Jays favor.

Scott Richmond (0-1) pitched pretty well today in just his second big league start. He pitched 5 and 2/3 innings, giving up three runs on seven hits.

If not for one mistake, Richmond might have been able to earn his first ever major league victory.

Unfortunately, he left a pitch up high to Bobby Crosby and it was smacked for a two run triple in the fourth inning. Besides that pitch, Richmond was good and was able to work himself out of a couple of jams.

Greg Smith, Richmonds counterpart, faired quite well against the Jays and it continued a season long trend of not being able to hit left handed pitchers for Toronto.

Smith would go six strong innings, giving up just two runs on four hits. Smith also managed to strike out four Blue Jay hitters.

Unfortunately for Smith, his bullpen was unable to hold the 3-2 lead he had when he left the game.

Down 3-2 in the ninth, the Jays were down to their last hope and they would be facing struggling Oakland Athletics closer Huston Street.

Alex Rios led off the inning with a single and later scored on a double by Rod Barajas.

Three batters later, pinch-runner Brad Wilkerson was circled by a mob of Blue Jays at home plate after Mench delivered the game-winning single.

This marked the third walk-off victory of the season for the Jays and if not for the defenseive wizardry of John McDonald it likely never would have been possible.

Brandon League would get himself in a jam in the eighth inning when he loaded the bases with nobody out. Mark Ellis would come up and hit a line drive that seemed destined to land in left field, a hit that would have scored at least one run, possibly two.

Fortunately, John MacDonald made a game saving diving catch. He then noticed the runner on second had ran to far from the bag and he proceeded to gun him down with a throw from his knees.

There were a lot of "heros" tonight but John MacDonald proved to be the biggest of them all.

Up next: Shaun Marcum (5-5) looks to regain the form he had before going on the disabled list as he takes on Gio Gonzalez (0-0), who is making his major league debut.