Nurse makes the right moves again as Raptors begin playoff push — Toronto Sun

Nick Nurse loves to experiment, so why should he act any differently in Game 1 of the NBA playoffs? From going big early with Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka, to changing his coverage of Nets star Caris LeVert on the fly, to trying Matt Thomas in the first half and then going to fellow rookie […]

Nurse makes the right moves again as Raptors begin playoff push — Toronto Sun

Ryu’s pitching, Grichuk’s hitting spark Jays — Toronto Sun

The crafty, controlled arm of Hyun Jin Ryu and the big bat of Randal Grichuk, the one-two punch would propel the Blue Jays on this night in Baltimore. Read More

Ryu’s pitching, Grichuk’s hitting spark Jays — Toronto Sun

The crafty, controlled arm of Hyun Jin Ryu and the big bat of Randal Grichuk, the one-two punch would propel the Blue Jays on this night in Baltimore.

Toronto wasn’t exactly known for its efficiency of late, more blunder than thunder in how the Blue Jays went about their weekend business back in Buffalo. But it all changed, at least it did Monday, because Ryu came up big by going six strong innings, surrendering one run on four hits while walking zero Baltimore batters.

Ryu’s pitching, Grichuk’s hitting spark Jays

Grichuk’s three-run blast and single accounted for four runs as the Jays beat Baltimore, 7-2.

Cavan Biggio’s two-run blast in the ninth capped the night off in style.

Anthony Bass (back), who wasn’t available Sunday, was back on the mound in the eighth to retire the side in order, an encouraging sign as the Blue Jays move forward.{%27relatedChannels%27:%20[],%27autonav%27:true}&autoplay=0&playsinline=1

Hard to describe the evening as a must-win for the Jays, but the urgency was there following a disappointing and disjointed Sunday when the team lost twice to Tampa and the services of their best player.

Clean hasn’t been the operative word when assessing this team, but to its credit Toronto played good baseball against a pretty good Orioles side.

The Jays entered the night with a 7-11 record, the kind of numbers you want to roll when playing craps. But it’s baseball that is being played and unable to play cleanly has proven costly, especially in late innings. Mental errors have also conspired to deny the team wins.

Rowdy Telez, who was at first against the O’s, didn’t know how many outs there were in Baltimore’s first at-bats. It didn’t cost the Jays anything, but it highlighted the lack of focus and attention to details that has characterized this group.

The Orioles, in contrast, have been among baseball’s surprise stories.

Baltimore’s bats have been hot, but it was apparent early that Ryu would be a tough nut to crack, hitting his spots and showing a strong command of his pitches.

Following the win, the fourth for the Jays in Ryu’s fifth start, the lefty admitted how his velocity wasn’t quite there yet.

Against an aggressive lineup such as Baltimore’s, Ryu knew the goal was to coax as many weak contact as possible.

A total of 11 ground-ball outs would be recorded as Ryu kept Baltimore’s bats off balanced.

He wouldn’t take the bait as to whether Ryu should have stayed in the game following his 86-pitch outing.

The fact is the Jays produced an add-on run in the seventh, which meant Ryu had no business being back on the mound in the wake of the extended inning.

Moving forward, Ryu says he wants to get to 100 pitches.

Manager Charlie Montoyo loved his ace’s performance.

“That was vintage Ryu,’’ said Montoyo. “He’s pitching so well.”

Equally pleasing was how his team played, the approach they took and the execution they showed.

“The key is a good starter and it doesn’t matter what happened the night before,” added the skipper.

Montoyo said how Telez is in concussion protocol after he took a late-inning elbow to the head.

“That’s why we took him out (of the game),’’ said Montoyo. “He’s day to day.”


Sportsnet’s baseball insider Shi Davidi had the goods on Bo Bichette and his injured knee that placed the stud shortstop/hitter on the 10-game injured list.

According to Davidi, the second opinion on Bo’s knee was diagnosed as a Grade 1 strain of the lateral collateral ligament. It’s considered minor with no long-term impact.

The injury needs time to heal, but how long that involves remains to be seen.


Without Bichette, who was wielding a hot bat, in the lineup the Jays had to tweak their order.

Montoyo had Grichuk in the No. 2 spot.

His explanation was pretty straight forward and to the point.

“Other than Bo, he’s been my hottest hitter,’’ Montoyo said of Grichuk. “He’s been swinging the bat well.”

During the team’s five-game “home’’ stand in Buffalo, Grichuk went 8 for 19 at the plate.

He carried it over to Monday’s game.


Not only will Bichette’s bat be missed, but also his glove at short.

 Monday’s series opener in Baltimore, the Jays went with Joe Panik at shortstop.

The way Montoyo discussed the team’s plans in the absence of Bichette, a shortstop by committee will be in effect with Panik, who played short in college, Brandon Drury and Santiago Espinal in the mix.

Matchups, obviously, will play a role when Montoyo fills out his lineup.

“He’s going to get more of a chance to get regular at-bats,’’ said Montoyo of Panik.


Right-hander Nate Pearson makes his fourth start Tuesday.

In his most recent mound appearance, the kid struggled mightily.

To his credit, Pearson acknowledged how his past two starts were marred by poor command, an issue he tried to address with pitching coach Pete Walker during Pearson’s side sessions.

Video showed how Pearson’s front leg was an issue in his lack of command.

Pearson referred to the placement of his front leg as the source of his troubles.

“It was flying open a little bit,’’ said Pearson. “I’m learning to be more consistent in my delivery.”

Clippers fend off Mavericks after Porzingis ejection in Game 1 — Press Telegram

Officials separate the Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Clippers after the teams get into a scuffle during Game 1 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Monday, Aug. 17, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP) Dallas Mavericks’ Boban Marjanovic (51) defends as Los Angeles Clippers’ Montrezl Harrell (5) dunks during…

Clippers fend off Mavericks after Porzingis ejection in Game 1 — Press Telegram