Already with four hits on the day, Corey Patterson puncuated one of the best games of his career with a walkoff homer as the Blue Jays edged the White Sox 9-8 in 14 innings Saturday.
The Blue Jays survived today after the White Sox scored in both the eighth and ninth innings to send it to extras. Working the ninth, beleaguered Jays closer Frank Francisco blew his second straight save and gave up a run for the sixth time in 11 appearances this month.
Patterson had his third career five-hit game and first since 2006. He singled four times before taking Gavin Floyd deep in the 14th. Floyd took the loss in his first relief appearance since 2007.
Patterson scored a career-high four of the Jays’ nine runs.
Of course, no Jays recap would be complete without a Jose Bautista mention: he hit homer No. 20 in the first inning, a three-run shot off Edwin Jackson. He ended the game 3-for-4 with two walks.
The Jays returned to .500 at 26-26 by winning their second straight game.
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.