Second-inning rally leads Toronto Blue Jays past Cleveland Guardians 5-0 | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source
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Second-inning rally leads Toronto Blue Jays past Cleveland Guardians 5-0

Toronto Blue Jays third base Addison Barger (47) hits a single against the Cleveland Guardians during second inning MLB baseball action in Toronto on Saturday, June 15, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
Original Publication Date June 15, 2024 - 2:46 PM

TORONTO - Addison Barger's first stint in Major League Baseball was a disappointment. His second — granted, just one game so far — is already better.

George Springer, Barger and Spencer Horwitz all had RBI singles in a second-inning rally as the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Cleveland Guardians 5-0 on Saturday. Barger also drew a walk, a vast improvement over his first cup of coffee in the bigs earlier in the season when he went 1 for 18 in five games.

"It feels a little different. I'm a little more comfortable, more calmed down this time," said Barger. "Last time just everything happened really fast and it was a new thing.

"I kind of know what to expect more now and I'm more comfortable."

Barger's first stint with the Blue Jays began on April 24 and lasted until May 1. The 24-year-old utility player was sent back to Toronto's triple-A affiliate in Buffalo, N.Y., the next day. He had a .256 batting average for the Bisons with eight home runs and 34 RBIs.

When veteran designated hitter Daniel Vogelbach was designated for assignment on Friday, Barger was recalled from Buffalo.

"I just thought I had to get back to work," said Barger on being sent down to the minors. "I knew what to work on and just grind it out every day and earn the chance to come up."

Isiah Kiner-Falefa added an RBI single in the fourth for Toronto (34-36) and Daulton Varsho drove in another in the fifth. The Blue Jays improved to 26-7 when they score four or more runs.

Relief pitcher Trevor Richards was Toronto's "opener," allowing just a hit and getting one strikeout over 2 1/3 innings as the Blue Jays still haven't found a fifth starter to replace Alek Manoah.

The burly six-foot-six Manoah last pitched on May 29. He will have season-ending surgery to repair the ulnar collateral ligament in his right arm on Monday.

Relievers Tim Mayza, Zach Pop of Brampton, Ont., Bowden Francis (3-2), Genesis Cabrera and Nate Pearson preserved the shutout for the Blue Jays.

Shortstop Brayan Rocchio said Cleveland's offence was stymied by seeing so many different Toronto pitchers.

"It’s tough because every time you have a plan for one pitcher, and the rest of the game you make your adjustment," he said. "When you see a lot of pitchers, you have to do a quick adjustment and keep fighting."

Carlos Carrasco (2-6) allowed five runs on six hits and two walks. He struck out two over five innings for Cleveland (44-24). Tim Herrin and Pedro Avila combined for three innings of scoreless ball out of the Guardians bullpen.

Justin Turner opened the second inning with a walk and Varsho put runners in scoring position with a double. Springer's basehit scored Turner and advanced Varsho. Barger then hit a no-out single to centre to cash in Varsho.

"I think what (Barger's) been doing in triple-A is hitting the ball with some authority and hopefully that translates here," said Blue Jays manager John Schneider.

Kiner-Falefah advanced Barger and Springer to second and third with a sacrifice bunt and then Horwitz singled to left field. That plated Springer for a 3-0 lead after two.

Toronto added another run in the fourth when Kiner-Falefa's single to centre field scored Springer from second. Kiner-Falefa made a rare appearance at shortstop as all-star Bo Bichette took the day off to rest a sore right calf.

Varsho eked out another run for the Blue Jays in the fifth. He grounded into a double play with the bases loaded. Turner got forced out at second but Vladimir Guerrero Jr. reached third and Danny Jansen scored to make it 5-0.

JOSE PA-MIREZ — Guardians all-star third baseman Jose Ramirez was placed on the team's paternity leave list hours before the opening pitch. He will likely rejoin the Guardians in Cleveland on Tuesday for the start of a homestand.

ON DECK — José Berríos (5-5) will take the mound for Toronto in Sunday's series finale.

Ben Lively (6-2) is scheduled to start for Cleveland in the matinee.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 15, 2024.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2024
The Canadian Press

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