By: Brian Endicott
Yan Gomes connected for two home runs and starting pitcher Cody Anderson turned in a strong performance, but it wasn’t enough for the Cleveland Indians to extend their 6-game winning streak as the Tribe fell to the Toronto Blue Jays 5-3 in extra innings.
Gomes’s first home run came off Toronto starter Marco Estrada in the 7th and tied the score. Toronto would come right back in the bottom half of the 7th by manufacturing a go-ahead run using pinch runner Dalton Pompey’s speed. Pompey, who was called up earlier in the day from AAA-Buffalo, pinch ran for Justin Smoak. With one out and Ryan Webb pitching to Kevin Pillar, Pompey stole second then stole third and was able to score off Pillar’s sacrifice fly to give the Blue Jays back the lead.
Toronto lead 3-2 until Gomes came to bat again in the 9th. The Blue Jays brought in 20 year old rookie Roberto Osuna for the save, but Gomes worked the count full before taking Osuna deep for a game-tying home run nearly identical to his first. It was Osuna’s 2nd blown save in 18 attempts.
Gomes’s heroics weren’t enough. Ryan Goins hit a walk-off 10th inning home run off of Bryan Shaw (L, 3-3) to give the Blue Jays the win and maintain their 1.5 game lead over the New York Yankees in the AL East. It was Shaw’s team-leading 59th appearance of the season.
Tribe starter Cody Anderson was very solid in making just his second start since returning from the disabled list. Anderson held the Blue Jays offense to 2 runs on only 3 hits over 6 innings to earn a quality start but a no-decision.
Michael Brantley also homered for the Indians, so all 3 runs were earned off solo homers. The homers were Gomes’s 10th and 11th of the season and Brantley’s 12th. The loss marked 66th time this season where the Indians were held to 3 or fewer runs, a category where they hold a dismal 16-50 (.242) record.
The Texas Rangers won, dropping the Tribe back to 5 games behind in the Wild Card chase.
Tonight’s rubber match in Toronto features Trevor Bauer (10-10, 4.31) against former Cy Young winner RA Dickey (9-10, 4.25). Dickey has been outstanding since the All Star break, posting a 6-0 record with a 3.02 ERA. In his career against the Indians, the knuckleballer is 3-2 with a 3.54ERA. Bauer will bring some renewed confidence to the hill after tossing 8 innings of 5-hit ball (1 earned run) on Friday, picking up a win against the Los Angeles Angels. First pitch is 7:07.