BALTIMORE – The game pitted the two worst teams in the AL East, lasted more than four hours and ended in the rain before a smattering of fans.
After 12 pitchers combined to throw 374 pitches and issue 13 walks on a soggy Wednesday night, the Toronto Blue Jays retreated to the clubhouse at Camden Yards to savour the end of a five-game losing streak.
Rowdy Tellez hit a grand slam to cap a six-run fifth inning and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. had three hits to help Toronto beat the Baltimore Orioles 8-6 Wednesday night.
Lourdes Gurriel Jr. had two RBIs for the Blue Jays, who matched their run total from the previous five games combined.
“A lot of times one guy has a good at-bat and the next two guys don’t have good at-bats,” manager Charlie Montoyo said. “But today, one by one, they had good at-bats. So that helped.”
Toronto sent nine batters to the plate in the fifth, scoring on an infield single and a wild pitch before Tellez sent a 2-2 pitch from Miguel Castro over the right-field scoreboard . It was the second grand slam of the season for the rookie, who had gone hitless in his previous 11 at-bats.
Trey Mancini homered for the Orioles, who won the series opener and were trying to put together back-to-back victories for the first time since May 4-6.
Baltimore used a four-run eighth to cut into an 8-2 deficit but could not complete the comeback.
Pitching in his 400th career game, Edwin Jackson (1-4) allowed two runs in five innings of relief for Toronto. The 35-year-old was initially listed as the starter, but Montoyo switched to opener Derek Law so the struggling Jackson could avoid facing the top of the Baltimore batting order at the outset.
Law pitched a scoreless first inning before giving way to Jackson, who came in with an 11.90 ERA over five starts.
Backed by a rare offensive outburst from the Blue Jays, Jackson earned his first win since Sept. 20.
“It’s always good when you’re having fun and you’re scoring a lot of runs,” the right-hander said. “It was good for that to happen to the team, just that little reassurance of the things they’re capable of doing.”
Daniel Hudson quelled Baltimore’s uprising in the eighth and earned his first save by getting three straight outs after the Orioles put runners on second and third.
“I thought we did a great job battling back from down 8-2, making it interesting there at the end,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “Unfortunately, Hudson kind of turned it up there. We just didn’t get it done.”
Baltimore starter David Hess (1-9) gave up four runs, five hits and four walks in four-plus innings. He’s winless in 12 starts since beating Toronto on April 1.
“The walks were really killer tonight, and especially in that fifth inning that created a big inning,” Hess said. “That’s something that needs to be limited.”
The game drew 11,153 fans, many of whom departed after it started to rain in the seventh.
HOME AND AWAY
Baltimore’s major league-worst home record fell to 9-24. Toronto ended a seven-game road skid and improved the AL’s second-worst road record to 12-21.
Blue Jays: Toronto closer Ken Giles (1-1, 1.08 ERA, 11 saves) was placed on the 10-day injured list, retroactive to June 9, with elbow inflammation. Montoyo expects the right-hander’s stint on the IL to be a short one.
Orioles: Hyde said the decision to shut down RHP Alex Cobb for season-ending hip surgery did not come abruptly. “I knew it was a possibility. Obviously we want what’s best for Alex, and we want Alex healthy,” said Hyde, who expects Cobb to be ready for spring training.
The Blue Jays filled Giles’ roster spot by purchasing the contract of right-handed reliever Jordan Romano from Triple-A Buffalo. Romano pitched a scoreless seventh inning to become the 28th Canadian-born player in Blue Jays history and 13th to make his major league debut with Toronto.
Blue Jays: Marcus Stroman (3-8, 3.31 ERA) makes his 15th start of the season in the series finale. He is 4-5 lifetime vs. Baltimore.
Orioles: Gabriel Ynoa (0-2, 4.96) resumes his quest to earn his first win since Sept. 21, 2017. The right-hander has never faced Toronto.
© 2019 The Canadian Press