Donaldson homers twice, Smoak drives in three as Blue Jays top Yankees | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

Current Conditions

Mostly Cloudy

Donaldson homers twice, Smoak drives in three as Blue Jays top Yankees

Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson (20) hits a solo home run against the New York Yankees during first inning MLB American League baseball action in Toronto, Friday, June 2, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
June 02, 2017 - 8:55 PM

TORONTO - Not even a two-homer night was enough to satisfy Josh Donaldson.

The Blue Jays third baseman, who returned from a calf injury just a week ago, led Toronto in a 7-5 win over the New York Yankees on Friday with a pair of solo homers, bringing his home run tally to three over his last three games.

"I'm not where I want to be right now but I am getting a few pitches to hit and I haven't missed them," Donaldson said. "But there's still definitely some at-bats I feel I could do a better job at.

"I'm still working and trying to improve."

Justin Smoak, one of the Blue Jays top offensive producers this season, drove in three runs and Francisco Liriano pitched into the sixth in his return from the DL as Toronto held off a tough New York lineup.

Smoak had two hits in total, including a two-run homer, scored twice and added a sacrifice fly for the Blue Jays (27-28) to bring his RBI total to a team-high 37. He had 34 RBI's in 2016.

"Honestly I'm just trying to have good at-bats and go from there," Smoak said. "I've always had high expectations for myself and it's just going out there and grinding out every day right now."

Donaldson, who saw a lot of Smoak when both played in the AL West — the former with Oakland and the latter with Seattle — said he's seen a marked change in the way Smoak has approached his at-bats over the years.

"It's very satisfying to see all the work and everything that he's put in and him starting to have continued success," Donaldson said. "Every day you're expecting something out of him and he's coming through."

Devon Travis drove in a run on another sac fly, and Roberto Osuna closed it out for his 12th save.

Liriano (3-2), activated off the DL (left shoulder inflammation) earlier in the day, allowed two runs on four hits and two walks while striking out five through five innings in his first start since May 10.

He started off slowly, running into trouble with the bases loaded and one out in the third, but Donaldson bailed him out by snagging a ground ball to his left and turning a double play.

Liriano kept the Yankees off the basepaths in the fourth and again in the fifth when he struck out the side.

"I thought as the outing went along he got better and better," manager John Gibbons said of his starter.

Aaron Judge and Starlin Castro each hit two-run homers for the Yankees (31-21) and Matt Holliday had an RBI double. Michael Pineda (6-3) allowed 10 hits and five runs through five innings. He also walked three batters and struck out one.

Toronto had 12 hits, including at least one from every player in the starting lineup. New York had eight.

The Blue Jays attacked early with three runs in the first inning.

Donaldson started it with his first solo homer, then Smoak followed with his towering two-run shot.

Smoak added to the lead in the third, scoring Jose Bautista from third on a sac fly. Luke Maile, starting a second straight game in place of No. 1 catcher Russell Martin, scored Toronto's fifth run in the fourth inning, racing home from third on a Pineda wild pitch.

The Yankees roared back in the sixth inning, scoring four runs to cut their deficit to 5-4. Gary Sanchez led off with a single before Judge launched his 18th homer of the season into the second deck to spell the end of Liriano's night and Castro hit a two-run homer off Danny Barnes.

Donaldson restored some of the cushion with his second homer, off reliever Jonathan Holder in the bottom of the sixth.

The Yankees tacked on another run on Holliday's RBI double in the seventh but Travis's sac fly gave the Jays the 7-5 lead they wouldn't relinquish.

"They tried to get right back in it there for a second but we were able to keep putting runs on the board," Smoak said. "Against a team like that tides can change real quick so you have to keep your foot on the pedal and we were able to do that."

NOTES: It was Donaldson's 11th career multi-homer game. ... Martin sat out with a sore neck that Gibbons said wasn't related to a previous injury. Martin spent time on the disabled list last month with a nerve issue in his left shoulder. ... Attendance was 44,261.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2017
The Canadian Press

  • Popular penticton News
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile