Encarnacion hits 2 home runs, Blue Jays beat Orioles 13-6

April 21, 2015

TORONTO (AP) The way his two starts against the Toronto Blue Jays have gone, Bud Norris may want to forgo any more appearances against them this season.

Less than two weeks after lasting just three innings in the Orioles' home-opening loss to their American League East rivals, Norris was pulled after just 2 1-3 innings Tuesday night after surrendering nine earned runs.

Edwin Encarnacion smashed a pair of solo home runs and Jose Bautista added his 250th of his career to power the Blue Jays to the 13-6 win.

''This is not how I envisioned the start of my 2015 season, but this game is all built on failure and you have to learn from that and go forward,'' said Norris (0-2).


It was the second inning, sparked by Encarnacion's first homer, a leadoff shot, that put the Orioles in a hole, as the Blue Jays put six runs on the board.

''It hurt a lot. A six-run spot hurts everybody,'' Norris said. ''Everybody knows coming into this ballpark it's going to be a high-scoring affair, so you try to minimize the damage as best you can.''

The home run that started it landed on the batter's eye beyond center field.

Encarnacion's second, his fourth of the season, was a left-field blast into the top deck of Rogers Centre. It was just the 18th home run to climb that high in the 26-year history of the stadium.

Baltimore manager Buck Showalter singled out his team's defense as an area for concern after the loss. As for Norris, he chalked it up to a bad night.

''Command has been an issue for him, getting the ball where he needs to get it consistently and it's a situation where his track record says he's better than that and we'll trust that,'' said the reigning AL manager of the year.

Toronto starter Mark Buehrle (3-0) went six innings to get his second win against the Orioles this year.

Even though Encarnacion had two homers, it was Bautista's two-run shot off rookie reliever Jason Garcia that was the talk of both locker rooms afterward.

The 22-year-old had narrowly missed Bautista with the second pitch of the at-bat, and three pitches later, the Blue Jays' veteran responded by depositing the ball beyond the left-field wall, stopping to admire it before rounding the bases.

That didn't go unnoticed, and outfielder Adam Jones shouted at Bautista as he left the field.

''It's not his first, it's not a walk-off, it's in the seventh inning,'' Jones said. ''Let's not walk halfway down the line. Respect the game. I know he does, but at that moment right there he didn't, and when it happens against my team, I'm going to take offense to it.''

Unperturbed, Bautista defended his actions.

''You throw at me, I'm not going to forget and if I get you right after, I'm going to enjoy it,'' he said. ''And I did. I have no regrets about it.''

Toronto's fourth run of the second inning prompted Showalter to challenge the call that Dalton Pompey avoided the tag at the plate from catcher Caleb Joseph. The call stood.


Orioles RH Ubaldo Jimenez (1-0) faces Blue Jays RH Aaron Sanchez (0-2) on Wednesday night. Over three career appearances at Toronto's Rogers Centre, including two starts, Jimenez has an earned-run average of 8.68.


Blue Jays: Rookie second baseman Devon Travis sat out with sore ribs after being hit by a pitch on Sunday. Outfielder Michael Saunders, on a rehab assignment with Single-A Dunedin after knee surgery during spring training, will ''ideally'' join the team in Tampa this weekend, said manager John Gibbons. Starter Daniel Norris underwent an MRI on his pitching arm after suffering what he termed a ''dead-arm phase'' following his last start on Sunday. The test revealed he had nothing more serious than fatigue.

Orioles: Shortstop J.J. Hardy, recovering from a left shoulder strain, is with Triple-A Norfolk and hit off a tee and took ground balls Tuesday, but there is no timetable for his return. According to Showalter, catcher Matt Wieters, who is rehabbing following Tommy John surgery, may catch two to three innings on Friday in Sarasota.