Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Edwin Encarnacion

Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Edwin Encarnacion

Encarnacion slam lifts Jays over Orioles

TORONTO — Plenty of star power and promising pitching by the Baltimore Orioles gave the Toronto Blue Jays every reason to resign themselves to a long night. Through three innings, that is. Edwin Encarnacion’s grand slam was the highlight of Toronto’s 12-6 win over the Orioles on Thursday, but the adjustments made by Adam Lind, J.P. Arencibia and Brandon Morrow helped the Blue Jays overcome an early 3-0 deficit.

TORONTO — Plenty of star power and promising pitching by the Baltimore Orioles gave the Toronto Blue Jays every reason to resign themselves to a long night.

Through three innings, that is.

Edwin Encarnacion’s grand slam was the highlight of Toronto’s 12-6 win over the Orioles on Thursday, but the adjustments made by Adam Lind, J.P. Arencibia and Brandon Morrow helped the Blue Jays overcome an early 3-0 deficit.

Credit goes to Lind and Arencibia for being the first Toronto batters to figure out hard-throwing Orioles starter Kevin Gausman. Back-to-back doubles by the pair put the Jays on the scoreboard in the fourth inning, and they were back at it in the fifth following Arencibia’s two-run homer for a 4-3 lead.

“We were able to put some good at-bats,” said Arencibia. “Their starter’s got pretty good stuff and throws hard. Edwin hitting that ball gives us some breathing room, makes the game, definitely not easier but definitely makes it a little more relaxing.”

Arencibia said it helped to see Gausman’s arsenal after the first at-bat. The Orioles’ drafted the 22-year-old righty fourth overall last year, and he came into the game with just 13 games of pro experience and no appearances above double-A.

Gausman (0-1) was effective early on the strength of a fastball that touched 98 miles per hour, but he lasted just five innings after surrendering four earned runs on seven hits with five strikeouts and two walks.

Arencibia’s homer off Gausman put Toronto ahead for good. The Blue Jays’ catcher said he hoped it was a sign the team won’t break so easily when trailing against opponents.

“I think that we’ve shown some confidence. It just wasn’t going the way we needed it to go. … This game, it’s a game of failure. So everyone’s not going to be on their best every night. So everyone just to try to chip in and try to squeeze as many runs as we can.”

There was no doubting Toronto’s confidence after Encarnacion hit the team’s first grand slam of the season into the left-field foul net off reliever Pedro Strop in the sixth inning. Encarnacion matched Arencibia with four RBIs each for the Blue Jays (20-27).

Baltimore (25-22) looked to go on an early run after a two-run double by Manny Machado and the major-league leading 15th homer of the season by Orioles first baseman Chris Davis.

But Morrow (2-3) rolled with the hits and gave Toronto’s offence time to rally. The right-hander looked in control until the eighth inning when he gave up back-to-back homers. He finished the game with a season-high six earned runs allowed on 10 hits, with five strikeouts and a walk.

“I fell in a good rhythm and was rolling pretty good through there,” said Morrow. “Kind of had my sight set on finishing the game. It’s frustrating for me to go out give up the two home runs without getting an out there in the eighth. It’s a good win, but it put a sour taste in my mouth.”

Morrow also struggled whenever Machado was at the plate. The Orioles’ star third baseman hit three doubles off Morrow and leads baseball with 21 on the season.

Morrow wasn’t all that bothered by it after the game. “Well, I mean, he just scored once right? Wasn’t all that bad,” he said.

Gausman meanwhile didn’t seem as though he’d taken a loss. He won praise from both team’s managers on a night he said he’d been waiting for his whole life.

“Definitely a learning experience for me but it was awesome. It was everything I could have imagined and more,” said Gausman.

The game turned contentious in the sixth inning when Colby Rasmus’s hit forced O’s outfielder Nate McLouth to dive into the left-field stands to make the catch. He went out of view but popped up with the ball in his glove as Blue Jays fans around him waved off the catch. That prompted a drink thrown at McLouth from the stands and a trip to the outfield by the umpires and Baltimore manager Buck Showalter.

In the end, Rasmus was ruled out and McLouth stayed in the game.

“It just kind of startled me for a second,” McLouth said of the tossed drink. “I’m not really sure how close it landed. That’s just one person doing something they shouldn’t do.”

Encarnacion’s grand slam later in the inning put Toronto ahead for good.

J.J. Hardy scored in the seventh for Baltimore, which made a game of it in the eighth when Markakis and Jones hit back-to-back home runs off Morrow.

The Blue Jays added plenty of insurance in the bottom of the inning. First, Anthony Gose stole home from second base on a passed ball by O’s reliever T.J. McFarland for a 9-6 lead. Gose just barely beat the relay and home plate umpire Tony Randazzo’s safe call prompted another visit from Showalter.

“I think that (Gose) could spare some of his speed and give it to me,” quipped Arencibia.

Encarnacion and Mark DeRosa walked to load the bases before Arencibia knocked in his fourth run of the night. Lawrie followed with a broken bat single to score Encarnacion, and Rasmus hit a sac fly to bring home DeRosa for a 12-6 lead in an inning that saw every Blue Jay hitter visit the plate.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

This Dec. 2, 2020, file photo provided by Johnson & Johnson shows vials of the COVID-19 vaccine in the United States. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Johnson & Johnson via AP
What you need to know about Johnson & Johnson’s approved single-dose vaccine

Canada added a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine to its pandemic-fighting arsenal on Friday,… Continue reading

FILE - This March 20, 2018, file photo shows the YouTube app on an iPad in Baltimore. YouTube on Friday, March 5, 2021, said it has removed five channels run by Myanmar’s military for violating its community guidelines and terms of service. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)
YouTube cancels Myanmar military-run channels, pulls videos

YouTube monitoring the situation for any content that might violate rules

Statistics Canada’s offices in Ottawa are shown on Friday, March 8, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Canada posts $1.4B trade surplus for January, first surplus since May 2019

Total imports increased in January to $49.8 billion

The wreckage of a fatal crash involving a semi-truck and the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team bus near Tisdale, Sask., is seen on Saturday, April, 7, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Court to hear arguments on delay in Broncos lawsuit for proposed class action

11 lawsuits have been filed by victims and their families

Bryson, six, and Mara, eight, play with puppies from Dogs With Wings Saturday. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)
WATCH: Dogs With Wings introduces Red Deer program

A program that trains puppies to be certified service, autism, facility and… Continue reading

Team Canada third John Morris follows as second Carter Rycroft (right) and lead Nolan Thiessen (left) sweep his rock during round robin competition against Team Newfoundland and Labrador at the Brier curling championship, Wednesday, March 9, 2016 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Champions at The Brier list

Brier champions since the inception of the Canadian men’s curling championship in… Continue reading

FILE - This Jan. 22, 2013 file photo shows Martin Bashir at the EA SimCity Learn. Build. Create. Inauguration After-Party, in Washington. British police said Thursday March 4, 2021, that they will not launch a criminal investigation into the journalist Martin Bashir over his 1995 interview with the late Princess Diana. (Photo by Nick Wass/Invision/AP, File)
UK police won’t probe journalist over 1995 Diana interview

Diana’s brother alleged Bashir used false documents to convince Diana

Dillon Dube scores hat trick for Flames in 7-3 win over Senators

Dillon Dube scores hat trick for Flames in 7-3 win over Senators

Walter Gretzky father of hockey hall-of-famer Wayne Gretzky waves to fans as the Buffalo Sabres play against the Toronto Maple Leafs in Toronto on Tuesday, January 17, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky, father of the Great One, dies at 82

Walter Gretzky, father of the Great One, dies at 82

Liverpool's manager Jurgen Klopp gives instructions during the English Premier League soccer match between Liverpool and Chelsea at Anfield stadium in Liverpool, England, Thursday, March 4, 2021. (Phil Noble, Pool via AP)
Liverpool slumps to historic 5th straight loss at Anfield

Liverpool slumps to historic 5th straight loss at Anfield

Philadelphia Flyers' Sean Couturier (14) celebrates with teammates after scoring against Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry (35) during the first period of an NHL hockey game Thursday, March 4, 2021, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Flyers rally from early deficit to stun Penguins 4-3

Flyers rally from early deficit to stun Penguins 4-3

Most Read