In a 14-inning marathon, the Rangers topped the Blue Jays 6–4 in Game 2 of the ALDS to take a 2–0 series lead.
Ross Ohlendorf, the 14th pitcher used in the game and Texas’s sixth, struck out Kevin Pillar on a check-swing to compete a scoreless inning and earn the save, concluding a wild, back-and-forth contest. Texas nabbed its second straight road victory over heavily favored Toronto and can advance to the American League Championship Series with a win at home on Sunday.
The Rangers rallied in the 14th to break a 4–4 tie after Hanser Alberto, replacing the injured Adrian Beltre in the lineup, singled in Rougned Odor from second base off pitcher LaTroy Hawkins. The previous play had ended in controversy after Odor appeared to be tagged out sliding into second base after advancing on a single by Chris Gimenez. Replay showed Odor’s foot may have left the base on his slide while the tag stayed on, but the officials maintained that Odor was safe. The Rangers added an insurance run on an infield hit off reliever Liam Hendriks by Delino DeShields, who beat out a grounder to shortstop to score Gimenez.
Sparks flew in the 13th inning after Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson just missed a home run that went foul off Rangers reliever Keone Kela. Donaldson had words for Kela after the foul ball that led to both benches clearing. Kela walked the next batter, Jose Bautista, and then nearly gave up a game-ending home run to Edwin Encarnacion that was caught at the centerfield track by DeShields.
The Blue Jays also challenged in the bottom of the 12th after Chris Colabello led off the inning with a single. Rangers reliever Shawn Tolleson retired the next two batters, then pinch-runner Dalton Pompey stole second and third with Ryan Goins at the plate. Goins grounded out to second base to end the inning.
Early on, the game looked like it could get sloppy as the Rangers scored twice in the first after a series of Blue Jays blunders. Texas bailed its opponent out after baserunner Prince Fielder was caught hanging off the bag at third. Donaldson then homered in the bottom of the first to make it 2–1. The teams traded runs in the second inning to knot the game at 3–3 entering the third.
Ben Revere drove in Kevin Pillar in the fifth to give Toronto a 4–3 lead, and Texas tied the game at four in the eighth after Mike Napoli, pinch-hitting for Mitch Moreland, drove in DeShields with a single to right-centerfield.
Blue Jays starter Marcus Stroman allowed hits to the first three batters and then calmed down, holding Texas hitless until Elvis Andrus’s sixth-inning single and retiring 18 of 20 batters following a second-inning walk. He was removed after allowing a single to DeShields to lead off the eighth. He allowed five hits, two walks and three runs (two earned), with five strikeouts.
Rangers ace Cole Hamels went seven innings, allowing six hits and four runs (two earned) and striking out six.
The Blue Jays, widely picked as a favorite to win the series, dropped Game 1 5–3 on Thursday. Texas will host Game 3 Sunday night at 8:10 ET. and send out Martin Perez against Marco Estrada to try and close things out.
- Jeremy Woo