BALTIMORE (AP) — For much of this season, Marcus Stroman has pitched for the Toronto Blue Jays without receiving adequate run support.
His teammates made up for that shortcoming in a big way against the Baltimore Orioles.
Lourdes Gurriel Jr. homered to spark a seven-run sixth inning, Cavan Biggio went deep twice and the Blue Jays rolled to a 12-3 victory Thursday night.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Danny Jansen had three hits and two RBIs apiece for the Blue Jays, who rediscovered their offense against the woeful Orioles. After scoring eight runs during a five-game skid, Toronto tallied 20 in the final two games of the series.
“Everyone swung the bat well the last two days,” manager Charlie Montoyo said, “and that’s awesome to see.”
In this one, the Blue Jays reached a season high in runs and hits (17).
It was a sight to behold for Stroman, who had received nary a run of support in half of his previous 14 starts. His total backing was 2.87 runs per nine innings, lowest in the big leagues.
“I’ve been talking about it all year, kind of saying our guys were going to turn it around at some point,” the right-hander said. “It’s a long year and we’re starting to swing the bats better. A lot of young guys are beginning to get settled in.”
Stroman (4-8) allowed two runs, one earned, over six innings and left with a seven-run lead.
“I think we can do pretty special things with this lineup,” he insisted. “Some of these young guys can really hit, and I think they are only going to get better.”
Playing in his 15th major league game, Biggio hit solo shots in the second and seventh. He came in batting .146 with one home run and three RBIs.
Toronto used seven hits and two walks in the sixth to turn a 2-all game into a blowout. Gurriel started the onslaught with a drive to center off Gabriel Ynoa (0-3), and Freddy Galvis and Jansen added two-run singles before Guerrero and Justin Smoak capped the Blue Jays’ biggest inning of the year with RBI singles.
This is the 14th successive series that Baltimore has failed to win (0-13-1) since taking two of three against the White Sox from April 22-24.
“Rubber game of the series, we were right there in the top of the sixth and then it got away from us,” manager Brandon Hyde said.
Chance Sisco homered and Anthony Santander hit a pair of RBI singles for the rebuilding Orioles, whose minus-133 run differential is the worst in the majors.
“Everybody’s clearly frustrated, but we know the position we’re in,” first baseman Chris Davis said. “We have to focus on the positives. There are things that we’re trying to accomplish that are going to take time, they’re going to take work.”
ORIOLES’ TOP PICK HONORED
Drafted this month by Baltimore with the No. 1 overall pick, Oregon State catcher Adley Rutschman was named winner of the 42nd annual Golden Spikes Award on Thursday. The award is given to the top amateur baseball player in the United States based on their athletic ability, sportsmanship, character and overall contribution to the sport.
Blue Jays: Relief pitcher Elvis Luciano (1-0, 6.51 ERA) was placed on the 10-day injured list with right elbow inflammation. RHP Justin Shafer was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo.
Orioles: Mark Trumbo interrupted his rehab assignment to receive a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection in his sore right knee. He will be out 7-10 days, and “hopefully back on track after that,” Hyde said. Trumbo has been on the injured list the entire season following knee surgery in September. … OF Dwight Smith Jr. (concussion list) could be back this weekend, Hyde said. … OF DJ Stewart (right ankle sprain) will probably go on a rehab assignment if his time on the IL goes past Sunday, according to Hyde.
Blue Jays: Aaron Sanchez (3-7, 4.25 ERA) tries to end a run of six straight losses when Toronto opens a three-game series at Houston on Friday night.
Orioles: The World Series champion Boston Red Sox come to Camden Yards for a three-game series beginning Friday. Baltimore’s scheduled starter, Andrew Cashner, was scratched with a blister on his pitching hand. Hyde said the team would likely delve into the minor league system for a substitute starter.
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