Blue Jays get 17 hits, Buehrle sharp in win over Orioles
BALTIMORE — Mark Buehrle allowed one run over seven innings to win his third straight start, and the Toronto Blue Jays hit three home runs and had a season-high 17 hits in an 11-3 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday.
Jose Bautista hit a three-run drive and Colby Rasmus and Brett Lawrie had solo shots to help Toronto win the decisive matchup of the three-game series.
Rasmus, Edwin Encarnacion and Adam Lind each collected three hits for the Blue Jays, who enjoyed their highest scoring game of the year at the expense of Ubaldo Jimenez (0-3) and three Baltimore relievers.
Buehrle (3-0) gave up five hits, walked none and struck out two. The left-hander has allowed only two runs in 21 innings, an 0.86 ERA.
Chris Davis hit his first homer of the season for Baltimore, an eighth-inning drive off Esmil Rogers. Davis had a major league-leading 53 home runs last year.
Matt Wieters also connected for the Orioles, who scored only five runs in the series.
Jimenez allowed five runs and 10 hits over 5 1-3 innings in his third straight ineffective start. Signed to a four-year contract as a free agent in February, the right-hander has yielded 23 hits in 16 innings and owns a 7.31 ERA.
The Blue Jays took a 3-1 lead in the fourth. Lind walked on four pitches and took third when a ball girl near the left-field seats mistakenly gloved Encarnacion’s grounder inside the third base line. Dioner Navarro followed with a run-scoring groundout and Jonathan Diaz executed a perfect suicide squeeze on a pitch that came in at eye level.
Toronto pulled away with a five-run seventh, its biggest inning of the year. Lawrie hit a solo shot before Rasmus and Encarnacion hit two-run doubles off Josh Stinson.
Bautista connected in the eighth against Stinson to make it 11-1. Five of his nine hits this year are home runs.
In addition to hitting the ball hard, the Blue Jays played sound defense. Rasmus deftly chased down two flyballs in center and Lawrie made a sensational stop and throw at third base to rob Jonathan Schoop of a hit in the fifth inning.
Rasmus put Toronto up 1-0 in the first inning with his second home run in two games, a towering drive that became the 78th in the 23-year history of Camden Yards to land on Eutaw Street beyond the right field wall.
Baltimore pulled even in the bottom half when Nick Markakis singled and scored on a groundout by Adam Jones. But the Orioles wasted a leadoff double by Steve Pearce in the second, leaving them 0 for 6 with runners in scoring position.
They finished 0 for 8.
NOTES: Toronto 2B Maicer Izturis left in the second inning with a sprained left knee. … The Blue Jays have Monday off before opening a three-game series in Minnesota. The Orioles send Wei-Yin Chen to the mound Monday night in the opener of a three-game series against Tampa Bay. … Pearce became the final Orioles position player to get a start. … Jones reached on an infield single in the third inning for his 1,000th career hit. … Toronto’s Melky Cabrera extended his hitting streak to 13 games, longest in franchise history to start a season. … Bautista has reached in all 13 games either by hit or walk. … Buehrle was 0-3 against Baltimore last year.