Diaz gets winning hit as Blue Jays rally to beat Orioles 5-4
TORONTO (AP) — Baltimore closer Brad Brach saw his remarkable run of success come to a sudden end against the Blue Jays.
Aledmys Diaz hit a game-winning single in the 10th inning and Toronto rallied from a three-run deficit in the ninth to beat Brach and the Orioles 5-4 on Thursday night.
“It feels great to have a win like that,” Diaz said through a translator.
Teoscar Hernandez doubled off Miguel Castro (1-2) to begin the 10th and Justin Smoak was intentionally walked before Kendrys Morales and Luke Maile struck out. Diaz won it with a single to the wall in left, giving Toronto just its second win in its past 12 home games.
“We desperately needed that,” manager John Gibbons said. The Blue Jays entered having lost 17 of 22 overall.
Danny Barnes (2-1) pitched one inning for the win, which looked unlikely when Brach entered with a 4-1 lead in the ninth. Brach had a streak of 10 consecutive scoreless outings, but couldn’t extend his run.
“Brad’s been throwing real well,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “Tonight wasn’t one of those nights.”
Maile drew a one-out walk, Diaz doubled and both runners scored on Randal Grichuk’s second double of the game. Pinch-hitter Devon Travis walked before Kevin Pillar lined a tying single to center.
“I just didn’t execute,” Brach said. “Balls over the heart of the plate and they put good swings on them.”
Brach was working for the third straight game, the second time this season he’s done so. He also pitched in three straight games from April 4 to 6.
“I felt really good tonight,” Brach said. “Once I got out there, I just couldn’t locate the fastball.”
Brach’s only other blown save this season came on opening day, March 29, against Minnesota. He had allowed just one earned run in 13 road appearances before Thursday.
Castro replaced Brach and escaped the jam by getting Yangervis Solarte to ground into a double-play.
Baltimore broke a 1-1 tie in the seventh when catcher Austin Wynns hit his first career home run, a solo shot off Tyler Clippard.
The Orioles made it 4-1 in the eighth when Danny Valencia and Mark Trumbo hit back-to-back home runs off John Axford.
Orioles starter David Hess allowed one run and five hits in six-plus innings.
Blue Jays left-hander Jaime Garcia allowed just one run and four hits in six innings, but remained winless in eight starts.
Gibbons said Garcia dealt with a “nasty” blister on his index finger, but Garcia insisted it wouldn’t prevent him from making his next start.
Toronto’s Curtis Granderson hit his 46th career leadoff home run, matching Jimmy Rollins for fifth-most all-time. Granderson’s homer snapped a season-worst 0-for-18 slump.
Gibbons feared Hernandez would be out at second when he tried to stretch his leadoff hit in the 10th. “That’s one of those ones where it’s like ’Uh-oh, don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t,” Gibbons said. “Then he’s safe and it’s like, ‘Great play!’”
Toronto, which lost 3-0 to the Yankees in 13 innings on Wednesday, improved to 6-1 in extra innings. The Blue Jays last played consecutive extra-inning games at St. Louis on April 25 and 27, 2017.
Orioles: LHP Zach Britton (Achilles) pitched one inning for Triple-A Norfolk, his fourth scoreless rehab appearance. Britton is expected to make back-to-back appearances for Norfolk on Sunday and Monday and could rejoin the Orioles as early as Wednesday, Showalter said. ... RHP Darren O’Day (right elbow) struck out all three batters he faced in a scoreless inning for Class-A Frederick Thursday and could rejoin the Orioles on Saturday, Showalter said.
Blue Jays: 3B prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr. was placed on the seven-day minor league disabled list because of a sore left leg. Guerrero left Wednesday’s game for Double-A New Hampshire. ... 3B Josh Donaldson (left calf) fielded grounders and took batting practice before the game. Donaldson is eligible to come off the DL on Friday, but is expected to need an extra day or two. ... RHP Marcus Stroman (shoulder) will throw a three-inning simulated game at Toronto’s spring training facility in Florida on Friday. Stroman (0-5, 7.71) has been out since May 8.
Orioles RHP Andrew Cashner (2-7, 5.02) faces Blue Jays LHP J.A. Happ (7-3, 4.08). Cashner has lost two straight starts, while Happ is unbeaten in his past four outings.
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