TORONTO — Colby Rasmus didn’t feel like celebrating after helping the Blue Jays clobber his little brother.
Sullen and conflicted in the locker-room, Rasmus struggled to put into words how he felt playing against Atlanta Braves reliever Cory Rasmus.
It was a game in which Colby Rasmus hit a two-run homer during a 9-3 victory Monday, but all he could think about was the hit parade Toronto enjoyed against the younger Rasmus.
“It was a strange feeling. Lot of emotions going on. But it was awesome and terrible at the same time,” said Colby Rasmus, who watched Edwin Encarnacion hit a three-run homer off his brother in the seventh inning.
Colby Rasmus also doubled off his brother during the same inning. It wasn’t a hit he was happy to reflect on.
“I’m not going to lie, my gut kind of wrenched up a little bit. But that’s the game,” he said, adding he didn’t know what pitches to expect because the brothers always used to play on the same team growing up.
It was the first time brothers played against each other in the majors since pitchers Jered and Jeff Weaver faced off in 2010.
Even though he lost the sibling matchup, Cory Rasmus said he enjoyed facing off against his brother during his second major-league appearance.
“It was still awesome,” he said. “The fact that we lost — the outcome is the most important part. But me facing him was a lot of fun. It just sucks that he got a hit.”
He wasn’t the only one. J.P. Arencibia also had a two-run homer as the Blue Jays pounced on Braves starter Tim Hudson (4-4), who gave up six runs on eight hits with just one strikeout.
Mark Buehrle (2-3) looked much better through six for Toronto (22-29) despite admitting he went into the game feeling lousy. Buehrle allowed one earned run on five hits, with two walks and six strikeouts.
It was another good outing for the Jays starter, who is recovering from a poor start to the season.
“I felt like I was in the strike zone a good amount for tonight,” said Buehrle.
“They’re swinging, putting the ball into play, or fouling the ball off. Making a good, quality pitch and they’re fouling it off. Obviously six innings ain’t the greatest but against a team like that and the way I felt today, I’ll take it every time,” added Buehrle.
Evan Gattis had the lone homer for NL East-leading Atlanta (30-20), a two-run drive in the eighth inning off Brad Lincoln.
Rasmus’s homer to right field in the second gave Toronto a 2-0 lead and came two batters after Adam Lind was rewarded for a great at-bat against Hudson. Lind battled for eight pitches against the Braves right hander before sending the ninth pitch to right field for a double.
Encarnacion made it 4-0 in the third. His hit to centre drove in Melky Cabrera and Jose Bautista, but Encarnacion followed them to the dugout after getting caught between first and second base.
On the mound, Buehrle had a one-hitter going until the fifth inning when Atlanta third baseman Chris Johnson doubled and shortstop Andrelton Simmons sent him home with a single.
The Blue Jays starter had only one more inning in him. Gattis hit a ball that bounced off Buehrle for a single in the sixth, prompting a chat with Toronto’s trainer. Brian McCann then moved runners to second and third, but Buehrle struck out Dan Uggla on his 111th pitch of the game to end the scoring threat, the inning and his outing.
Toronto’s offence took control from there. Lind had a lead-off walk in the bottom of the inning and on the next at-bat Arencibia crushed an offering from Hudson over the centre-field wall for a 6-1 Blue Jays lead.
The inning wasn’t without incident. Brett Lawrie stole second but his left ankle was caught on the base in a play similar to the one that severely sprained shortstop Jose Reyes’s left ankle in April. Lawrie moved to third but signalled to the dugout and was replaced by Mark DeRosa for the remainder of the game.
The team later announced Lawrie is day-to-day.
Notes: Attendance at Rogers Centre was 22,808. … Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said the team is hoping to have RHP Josh Johnson (triceps) back June 4 when Toronto opens a two-game series in San Francisco. … Braves centre-fielder B.J. Upton and right-fielder Jason Heyward were given the day off. … Brandon Morrow (2-3, 5.50 earned-run average) gets the start for the Blue Jays on Tuesday afternoon. Atlanta counters with Paul Maholm (6-4, 3.38 ERA).