TORONTO (AP) — In their first visit to Toronto, the San Diego Padres hit yet another home run but didn’t manage much else against the Blue Jays.
Aaron Sanchez pitched seven shutout innings to win his 10th straight decision, Kevin Pillar had three hits and Toronto beat the Padres 4-2 on Monday night.
Playing their first interleague road game against Toronto, the Padres were held scoreless until Alex Dickerson hit a two-run homer off Bo Schultz in the ninth.
Dickerson’s drive into the fifth deck extended San Diego’s team-record streak of games with at least one home run to 23. The 2006 Atlanta Braves were the last National League team to homer in 23 straight games.
"Heck of a swing," Padres manager Andy Green said. "If you’re ever privileged to stand close enough to the dugout to listen to him on deck, he literally whistles the bat. I’ve never heard anybody else swing a bat like that on deck."
Dickerson acknowledged admiring his towering shot as he began to round the bases.
"I saw it the whole way," he said. "It was one of my slower trots to first, honestly. It felt good, it really did."
Still, after losses in six of the past eight games for the Padres, Dickerson didn’t feel too much like celebrating.
"The streak is a fun thing to keep track of, but realistically, we’ll take a win with a bunch of singles," he said.
Sanchez (11-1) became the first Blue Jays pitcher to win 10 straight since Roy Halladay won 15 decisions in a row in 2003. Halladay and Roger Clemens (1998) hold the club record.
"It’s legit stuff. It’s top-of-the-rotation stuff," Green said about Sanchez. "It’s not surprising to see him do as well as he has this year."
Sanchez has not lost since April 22 against Oakland, a span of 16 starts. An All-Star for the first time this season, he lowered his ERA from 2.87 to 2.72.
"Just a good night for me," Sanchez said. "When you can command your fastball up and down, in and out, it’s a fun game. That’s kind of what it was tonight."
Roberto Osuna replaced Schultz and got two outs for his 21st save.
Padres right-hander Colin Rea (5-5) allowed three runs and five hits in six innings. He is winless in three starts.
Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista was activated off the 15-day disabled list before the game. Batting leadoff and playing right field, he went 1 for 3 with a walk. Bautista had been out since injuring his left big toe when he jumped into the outfield wall June 16 at Philadelphia.
WELCOME TO THE CLUB
Padres bench coach Mark McGwire hit the first fifth-deck homer in Toronto in 1996, and had a special greeting for Dickerson when he returned to the dugout. "He said I joined a very special club that he’s also a part of," Dickerson said. "That was a special moment for me."
SITTING DOWN ON THE JOB
Padres RHP Jose Dominguez sat on first base to complete a 3-4-1 double play in the seventh. Umpire Dan Iassogna initially called the runner safe, but the Padres challenged and the call was overturned.
San Diego recalled LHP Keith Hessler from Triple-A El Paso and optioned RHP Kevin Quackenbush to its top farm club. The Padres needed help after four relievers combined to pitch six innings in Sunday’s victory at Washington.
UPTON SITS AGAIN
Padres OF Melvin Upton Jr. sat out for the second straight game. Green confirmed that Upton, the subject of trade speculation, is healthy and could return Tuesday.
Padres: Dominguez stayed in the game after being hit on the left forearm by a line drive off the bat of Devon Travis, the first batter he faced.
Blue Jays: C Russell Martin (left knee) returned after missing three games. Martin was injured after he passed out and fell over in the shower following an extended spell in the sauna last Thursday.
Padres: RHP Andrew Cashner (4-7, 4.79 ERA) has struck out 17 batters while walking none over his past two starts. He is 0-2 in two starts against AL opponents this season.
Blue Jays: RHP Marcus Stroman (8-4, 4.90) has won his past two decisions and is unbeaten in four starts. He is 2-0 in four starts against NL opponents.