Randal Grichuk’s two home runs lift Toronto Blue Jays over New York Yankees 6-4


TORONTO — Randal Grichuk snapped a tie with a three-run blast in the fifth inning for his second homer of the game to give the Toronto Blue Jays a 6-4 win over the New York Yankees on Sunday.

The victory pushed Toronto (59-91) to a 2-1 series victory against the Yankees (98-53), who came to town with the best record in MLB.

The Blue Jays completed their six-game American League East homestand with a 4-2 record against the Yankees and Boston Red Sox.

After Toronto shortstop Bo Bichette pushed a bunt single past the left side of the mound with one out in the fifth, Cavan Biggio walked. Grichuk then crushed an 0-2 four-seam fastball from reliever Nestor Cortes Jr. (5-1) into the second deck in left field.

Grichuk extended his hit streak to eight games with his two home runs. The twin blasts brought his team-leading and career-high total to 28.

Grichuk has gone 10 for 31 during his hit streak with three doubles, a triple, four homers and nine RBI.

His solo blast to right centre field in the third inning off Yankees left-handed hurler Jordan Montgomery tied the game at 3-3. The lefty relieved opener Chad Green to begin the second inning.

Montgomery made his first appearance since he injured his throwing elbow on May 1, 2018, and underwent Tommy John surgery.

Montgomery, however, yielded three runs in his outing. After Aaron Judge gave New York the lead with a one-out homer to right field in the first inning, the Blue Jays scored twice in the second inning with two out.

Infielder Brandon Drury doubled to left field and scored on Billy McKinney’s single to centre. He was driven home by Richard Urena’s double to left.

Wilmer Font opened on the mound for Toronto. He gave way to 24-year-old righty T.J. Zeuch (1-0) to begin the second inning.

Zeuch made his third appearance of the season. After an impressive second inning, the Yankees touched Zeuch for two runs in the third inning thanks to three hits and a walk to the first four batters. D.J. LeMahieu doubled in Tyler Wade, and Didi Gregorius knocked in LeMahieu with a single to right.

Zeuch made it through 5 1/3 innings, giving up three runs — two earned — with five strikeouts and three walks.

The Yankees scored an unearned run in the seventh inning. Catcher Austin Romine led off with a double to left field with Zeuch still pitching. Romine scored two batters later because of a throwing error from third baseman Urena.

Toronto’s Ken Giles worked a 1-2-3 ninth, including a game-ending strikeout of Judge, for his 20th save in 2019.

The Yankees could have clinched a playoff berth with a win and a Cleveland Indians loss at home to the Minnesota Twins.

Tim Wharnsby, The Canadian Press