Taxed 'pen falters after Hutchison's short start

Osuna, throwing for fourth time in four days, gives up walk-off homer in 11th

Taxed 'pen falters after Hutchison's short start

CHICAGO -- Roberto Osuna has been better than anyone could have possibly expected this season, but he's not going to be perfect forever. Wednesday night's 7-6 loss to Chicago was one of the rare times when he coughed it up.

Toronto's 20-year-old closer entered a tie ballgame in the bottom of the 11th inning and saw the second pitch he threw sent over the fence in right field for a walk-off homer by Chicago's Adam Eaton. The Blue Jays have now dropped five of their last seven games.

Osuna was used out of necessity -- with only Ryan Tepera remaining in the bullpen -- but it also marked the fourth time he threw in the last four days. Three of those came in games, while the other occurred Monday night when he warmed up but ultimately was not used.

Eaton's walk-off homer in 11th

"Nah, I don't worry about that [stuff]," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said when asked about the amount Osuna has been used recently. "We're trying to win, this is the big leagues."

Osuna certainly can't be blamed for this loss after all he has done for the Blue Jays in 2015. Eaton's shot to right was just the second homer he has surrendered all season, and it was the first time Osuna was saddled with a loss since May 31.

The native of Mexico has been about as reliable as it gets despite having never pitched above Class A prior to this year. At some point the workload may become an issue, but he claimed after the game that he felt fine physically and that fatigue wasn't a factor.

Osuna admitted he thought Eaton was going to bunt, but that the 94-mph fastball was located where he wanted it. On this night, though, it didn't work out.

"I just watched the video and the pitch was right in the glove," Osuna said. "That was right there, he was going to swing. I tried to go ahead and made a mistake and he hit the ball pretty well, but the pitch was right there."

The Blue Jays' bullpen was put in the difficult position because of yet another short outing by right-hander Drew Hutchison. Toronto's Opening Day starter allowed four runs over five innings, but escaped with a no-decision thanks to the Blue Jays' lineup.

Hutchison whiffs Beckham

It was the sixth consecutive start that Hutchison wasn't able to toss six or more innings. In 18 outings this year, Hutchison has pitched six or more innings six times -- the same number of times he hasn't been able to even make it out of the fifth.

Needless to say, this wasn't the first half that Hutchison or the Blue Jays were expecting. His ERA sits at 5.33 and his struggles on the road continue to be an issue with an 8.81 ERA in 10 outings. It provided little consolation on Wednesday night, but Hutchison was clearly frustrated and vowed to be better when he returns from the All-Star break.

"I just need to pitch better," Hutchison said. "It's that simple. We can talk about whatever you want to talk about, but I need to get the job done and pitch deeper into games, and I expect to do that coming back from the break. Come back and kind of reset and go out there and do what I'm capable of doing and be better."

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for Read his blog, North of the Border, follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.