Semien Walks Off Sox after Pitching Duel in Shortened Game

August 7-PART ONE

Rogers Centre has never had a split doubleheader-until this afternoon. It is the first in the stadium’s history. As if things couldn’t get worse for Boston, Martinez was placed on the COVID list before the game. Bench coach Will Venable has tested positive and is on the list as well. Remember that the games will both be seven innings. Ray pitches for Toronto against Pivetta, and they duel through the first four innings, Pivetta needing only 50 pitches to do so. Those innings pass in the blink of an eye, lasting only about an hour. In fact, Plawiecki picks up a single with one out in the fifth for the first hit for either club. Verdugo makes a sliding catch in left for the second out of the bottom of the fifth. Dickerson’s single right after that is the first hit allowed by Pivetta. Then again, even if Pivetta had no-hit the Jays this afternoon the league wouldn’t have recognized it because the game will not be nine innings.

Boston puts the first two men on in the sixth and have runners at the corners with two out. The Jays had failed to turn two, only getting the lead man at second. The first baseman never touched the bag, but neither did Verdugo. After review, Verdugo is ruled safe at first because of interference on the part of the first baseman, and a pop out ends the inning. Semien hits a walk-off blast to left on the first pitch of the bottom of the seventh, and the Blue Jays win the first game today, 1-0.