Two-run ninth inning gives Toronto Blue Jays 6-5 comeback win

Well, that was eventful, now wasn’t it?

In terms of important series’ in the season, this one for the Toronto Blue Jays against the Boston Red Sox is about as important as they come.
And on Tuesday night, it took a full nine innings and every dang hit for the Toronto Blue Jays to come from behind after blowing a 4-1 lead to win. The comeback was in thanks to Jordan Romano shutting the door in the top of the ninth, Alejandro Kirk doing the thing, and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. walking it off.

H I M #WALKOFF pic.twitter.com/ST4MZzPble
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) June 29, 2022

While the win was ever-so-sweet, it also highlighted the ongoing issues the Jays have had with their bullpen this season. Trent Thornton and Tim Mayza, who combined for 1.1 IP, allowed three earned runs after the Jays took a 4-1 lead.
The Jays got a good start out of Ross Stripling who went 5.0 innings allowing two earn runs while fanning three batters but uh… things didn’t go too great from there. Toronto put Adam Cimber into the game who went one inning allowing just one hit, which was a good sign.
Charlie Montoyo went with Trent Thornton to open the eighth and uh, it didn’t go great. He walked Franchy Cordero, then forced Christian Arroyo into a ground out taking the former off the field. The lineup flipped back to the top and Red Sox lead-off man Rob Refsnyder juiced a 425-footer over the wall.
After 0.2 IP, Tim Mayza came into the game allowing a single to Rafael Devers, before striking out J.D. Martinez. But in the top of the eighth, he allowed an RBI single against Christian Vazquez extending Boston’s lead to 5-4. Matt Gage came in and closed out the inning setting up a tense ninth.
Jordan Romano did his thing in the top of the inning, and in th …

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Author: Zach Laing / Blue Jays Nation

Two-run ninth inning gives Toronto Blue Jays 5-4 comeback win

Well, that was eventful, now wasn’t it?

In terms of important series’ in the season, this one for the Toronto Blue Jays against the Boston Red Sox is about as important as they come.
And on Tuesday night, it took a full nine innings and every dang hit for the Toronto Blue Jays to come from behind after blowing a 4-1 lead to win. The comeback was in thanks to Jordan Romano shutting the door in the top of the ninth, Alejandro Kirk doing the thing, and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. walking it off.

H I M #WALKOFF pic.twitter.com/ST4MZzPble
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) June 29, 2022

While the win was ever-so-sweet, it also highlighted the ongoing issues the Jays have had with their bullpen this season. Trent Thornton and Tim Mayza, who combined for 1.1 IP, allowed three earned runs after the Jays took a 4-1 lead.
The Jays got a good start out of Ross Stripling who went 5.0 innings allowing two earn runs while fanning three batters but uh… things didn’t go too great from there. Toronto put Adam Cimber into the game who went one inning allowing just one hit, which was a good sign.
Charlie Montoyo went with Trent Thornton to open the eighth and uh, it didn’t go great. He walked Franchy Cordero, then forced Christian Arroyo into a ground out taking the former off the field. The lineup flipped back to the top and Red Sox lead-off man Rob Refsnyder juiced a 425-footer over the wall.
After 0.2 IP, Tim Mayza came into the game allowing a single to Rafael Devers, before striking out J.D. Martinez. But in the top of the eighth, he allowed an RBI single against Christian Vazquez extending Boston’s lead to 5-4. Matt Gage came in and closed out the inning setting up a tense ninth.
Jordan Romano did his thing in the top of the inning, and in th …

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Author: Zach Laing / Blue Jays Nation

The Leafs won’t renew goalie coach Steve Briere’s contract

It appears that a goalie overhaul for the Leafs wasn’t just for the two goalies in the crease, as they have decided to move on from a member of their coaching staff.

NEWS: The #leafs are parting ways with goaltending coach Steve Briere and intend to do an analysis of that department while conducting a search for his replacement.
More here https://t.co/MoYvXcJbRq
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) June 9, 2022

Steve Briere’s current contract expires at the end of June and the Leafs opted not to renew it. Chris Johnston reported that the Leafs are going to do an analysis of Briere’s work with the team in addition to finding his replacement.
Having joined the Leafs in July 2015, a mere two months after the team hired Mike Babcock, it has been a mixed bag in the seven years with Briere as the goalie coach. While he played a role in the team having two All-Stars (Frederik Andersen in 2020, Jack Campbell in 2022), it was also mired by a steady decline in team save percentage over the past three seasons.
SEASON
SV%
LEAGUE RANK
2015-16
.904
25th
2016-17
.912
13th
2017-18
.917
5th
2018-19
.908
10th
2019-20
.901
18th
2020-21
.905
15th
2021-22
.900
22nd
There have only been two campaigns where the Leafs had a team save percentage over .910 and have ranked 15th or worse over the past three years. Additionally, Toronto has had the second-best goalie in all six of their playoff series over this six-year stretch of postseason appearances.
The decision to move on from Briere comes at a time when there is uncertainty regarding the goaltending tandem. Campbell is a UFA and has likely priced himself out of a return for next season and beyond. Petr Mrazek has two years remaining on his deal, but all signs point to him being on the move either via a buyout or trade.
More from TheLeafsNation.com

The Petr Mrazek Dilemma: Buyout or Trade? by Michael Mazzei

Using stats to try and find hidden draft gems by Jon Steitzer

William Nylander doesn’t need to change to have success with Maple Leafs by Nick Barden
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PointsBet Canada has officially launched in Ontario! Get a $25 free bet just for signing up right here! …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

BJN Radio – Ep. 76: The bats remained silent at The Trop, let’s hope they wake up for the Mariners

As you’d expect, facing the Rays at The Trop wasn’t the remedy that the Blue Jays needed.

Toronto dropped two of three in Tampa as the bats yet again remained completely silent. They’ve now dropped four series in a row since the end of April and have an 18-17 record on the season.
We recapped the series against Tampa and talked about George Springer bashing into the outfield ball, Matt Chapman’s struggles at the plate and with the glove, and the fact that the team’s approach at the plate seems completely lost. We also looked at some positives from the series, such as Hyun Jin Ryu and Danny Jansen doing well in their returns.
After that, we looked ahead at the upcoming series against the Seattle Mariners, which won’t feature old friend Robbie Ray. The Mariners have also been ice cold over the past few weeks, so hopefully, this can be the beginning of a turnaround for the Blue Jays.
You can listen to the episode here…

POINTSBET IS LIVE IN ONTARIO

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

William Nylander fought through food poisoning to play in Maple Leafs’ playoffs opener

It turns out, William Nylander wasn’t just battling the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday.
The Toronto Maple Leafs forward was embroiled in combat with his body after a suspected case of food poisoning the day of the game.
”I was puking that day, but whatever,” Nylander said. “I think it was sushi for lunch, I haven’t gone to that restaurant in a long time and it might have been where I got it.”
It didn’t show in the players’ performance in a 5-0 win against the Lightning to take Game 1 of their first round playoffs series. He had expected-goals rate of 63 per cent on Monday, according to NaturalStatTrick.com, and had an excellent breakaway chance in the first period that nearly converted.

Tavares sends Nylander in on a breakaway pic.twitter.com/c0J69hiezk
— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) May 3, 2022

Despite feeling ill, the thought of sitting out of his club’s playoffs opener never crossed the 26-year-old’s mind.
“I mean, it’s Game 1, you’ve got to be ready,” Nylander said. “It is what it is and I thought we battled as a team.”
Nylander did not participate in practice on Tuesday as he allowed his body to recover.
”He ran out of gas a bit in the second half of the game,” Keefe said of Nylander. “That’s part of the reason why he didn’t practice with us, just making sure he could get some food and fluids stuff into him which he wasn’t able to do yesterday…That’s the playoffs.”
Nylander will continue his third-line role against the Lightning in Game 2 on Wednesday, alongside David Kampf and Pierre Engvall, who also missed practice on Tuesday.
The Swede scored 34 goals and 36 assists …

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Author: David Alter / The Leafs Nation

Erik Kallgren earns first NHL shutout for Maple Leafs, who desperately needed a solid goaltending performance

It wasn’t just about how Swedish rookie goaltender Erik Kallgren played in his first NHL start but also how his team performed in front of them.
“I think they played great,” he said. “We had a great PK, they played great.”
Kallgren made 35 saves for his first NHL shutout as the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Dallas Stars 4-0.
It was a performance the Maple Leafs were clamouring for after a shaky few months in the crease. The 25-year-old was thrust into action in relief of goaltender Petr Mrazek on Thursday against the Arizona Coyotes and helped his team dig out of a 4-1 deficit to salvage a point in the standings in a 5-4 overtime loss.
Given a proper opportunity to play a full 60 minutes, Kallgren didn’t disappoint.
“He just picked up where he left off,” Keefe said of his goaltender’s performance. “Pucks came to him and for the most part, they stuck to him.”
Much like he did following his NHL debut, Kallgren showed the “poise” that many of his teammates said before the game about their goaltender.
“I felt ca …

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Author: David Alter / The Leafs Nation

We’re back to having no confidence in Leafs goaltending

It was a nice little run, wasn’t it? Jack Campbell looked pretty good last year and this year we were foolish enough to use words like All-Star and Vezina about him back in November. Then that all went to shit. To make matters worse, Petr Mrazek hasn’t exactly looked like a guy wanting to push Campbell for the starter job, and here we are once again, having little confidence in what looked like a pretty darn good team on paper.
Despite just reaching out to the TLN crew a few days ago to talk defense, it seemed necessary to round everyone up and ask another question to the group: What are your thoughts on the current state of Leafs goaltending and where do we go from here?
Michael Mazzei:
Goaltending is incredibly voodoo and we are experiencing that first hand with the recent play of Campbell and Mrazek. Campbell was asked to carry a heavy workload for the first few months due to Mrazek missing a lot of time with various injuries. The former did well to start and was arguably one of their most important players. Now we’re in a situation where Mrazek is finally healthy and trying to establish a rhythm while Campbell is regressing to the mean after the hot start and not in his usual r …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

TLN Three Stars: Say the line, Bart!

Well, that wasn’t a fun one. But it really shouldn’t have been a surprise. The Leafs came into tonight’s game without Mitch Marner, one of their best players, and Pierre Engvall and Ondrej Kase, two key cogs to their shutdown line, so with some obvious holes up front tonight, the fact that they were in the game as much as they were says a lot about how long Jack Campbell kept them in the game, and the dominant play of Auston Matthews tonight. They made a statement in the first half by taking a 4-1 lead in spite of that, and the Avalanche made a statement by coming back.
Three Stars
Third Star: William Nylander
Nylander didn’t end up with a single point tonight, but he was flying out there tonight, creating chance after chance, and honestly probably could have ended up with five or six if anyone could have buried them.
Second Star: Alexander Kerfoot
Kerfoot scored a key goal in the first, changing the momentum of the game early on by getting the first goal after the Leafs were getting hemmed in their own zone for the first eight minutes of the game. He was up against his former team, and got a bigger role playing on the Matthews line without Marner, and he showed up to pl …

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Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation

Woll earns first career shutout as Leafs rebound in win over Islanders

Joseph Woll wasn’t tested much but he was solid when called upon and earned his first career shutout in just his second start as the Leafs bounced back with a tidy 3-0 win against a struggling Islanders team. The Leafs got back in the win column after having their five-game winning streak snapped by the Penguins on Saturday night and handed a depleted Islanders lineup their sixth consecutive loss. It was the second game in as many nights for the Islanders to open their long-awaited new arena but the Leafs made sure to spoil the party in what was a mostly dominant victory for the Blue and White.
The Islanders have struggled to generate offense during their recent slide and the Leafs did well to limit their opportunities on Sunday night, helping to ease the burden on their rookie goaltender. The Leafs held the Islanders to just six shots on goal in the opening frame and seven in each of the next two periods to outshoot New York 40-20 on the evening, getting back to the strong defensive play that has been on display as they have piled up wins in the last few weeks.
After being shutout on …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

BJN Radio – Ep. 50: Welcome to Heartbreak

That wasn’t the storybook finish we were hoping for.

The Yankees rolled into Toronto for what was a playoff-like series at The Dome. Capacity was upped to 30,000 and the Blue Jays had a chance to catch the Yankees in the standings and ultimately put themselves in a position to earn a playoff spot. The table was set.
Unfortunately, it was the Yankees who showed up to play while the Blue Jays didn’t bring their best. The bats were silenced in the first game on Tuesday, Bo Bichette led the team to a win on Wednesday, and then, with a chance to pull within one game of New York on Thursday, Robbie Ray got lit up in the sixth inning and Toronto’s bats couldn’t solve the Yankees’ bullpen the rest of the way.
It was a heartbreaker, a gut-punch, and an energy-sucking loss.
We talked about a bunch of stuff on this episode of BJN Radio, including Bo’s amazing series, Nate Pearson having some good outings out of the ‘pen, and the decision by Charlie Montoyo to keep Ray in the game when it looked like the Yankees had him solved. We also looked ahead to …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation