The Toronto Blue Jays were in action in the afternoon on Thursday as Matt Shoemaker tossed another gem at the Orioles, and Randal Grichuk, fresh off his $52-million contract extension, provided the offense in a 5-3 win.
Shoemaker picked up his second win as a Blue Jay, giving up just two hits and a walk, with one hit batter in a masterful performance, striking out eight and having seven ground ball outs and just two fly outs in a seven-inning outing. In 14 innings this year, he now has 15 strikeouts and still hasn’t given up a run. Joe Biagini continues to be his new-old self, allowing just a hit in an inning of work.
All almost went for naught as Daniel Hudson came on for the ninth. While he got the leadoff batter, Dwight Smith Jr. and Jonathan Villar had back-to-back singles before Trey Mancini hit a home run to get the Orioles back within two of the Blue Jays. The Jays called on closer Ken Giles and came on to struck out the next to batters to seal the victory.
Randal Grichuk was the other side of the story for the Jays, going 3/4 with two home runs and a double, scoring three times and driving in two. Grichuk jumped on the first pitch by Nate Karns in the first inning, hitting a double and was brought in by a single by Teoscar Hernandez. In the third, he hit a solo home run to center field and he hit a much-needed solo shot in the ninth. Later in the ninth, with Teoscar Hernandez on base after a walk, Rowdy Tellez had a base hit and Lourdes Gurriel hit a double, driving in Hernandez and Tellez but Gurriel was thrown out at third base trying to stretch the double.
Hernandez was 1/3 with a double and a run while Gurriel was 2/4 with an infield single and a double, driving in two but he was thrown out at third in the ninth and was also caught stealing. Luke Maile had a pair of hits, going 2/3 and both Rowdy Tellez and Richard Urena were 1/3.
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