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Jays need to win Wednesday’s Game 2 of AL wild-card series to avoid elimination

MINNEAPOLIS — The Toronto Blue Jays played 161 games over six long months before clinching an American League wild-card playoff berth.

If the Jays don’t win Wednesday at Target Field, their post-season experience will be both brief and finished.

The team that embraced the mantra ‘Take October’ lost 3-1 to the Minnesota Twins in Tuesday’s opener of the best-of-three wild-card series.

Blue Jays’ starter Kevin Gausman, who only lasted four innings, gave up two homers to Twins’ designated hitter Royce Lewis — a two-run shot in the first inning, and a solo shot in the third that accounted for all of Minnesota’s offence. The Twins were outhit 6-5 and committed the game’s only error.

Kevin Kiermaier had an RBI-single in the sixth inning to score the Jays’ lone run.

The Jays will hand the ball to right-hander Jose Berrios for Game 2, while the Twins counter with Sonny Gray. First pitch is scheduled for 4:38 p.m. ET.

A third game, if necessary, will be played Thursday at Target Field.

The winner of the series advances to play the Houston Astros in the AL Division Series.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 4, 2023.

The Canadian Press