Yankees Fall to Blue Jays 8-4

Russell Martin hit his first two home runs of the season, Michael Saunders also went deep and the Blue Jays finally broke out their big bats again Wednesday night, halting the Yankees' six-game winning streak with an 8-4 victory.

Marco Estrada took a two-hitter into the seventh inning and the last-place Blue Jays won for the fourth time in six games following an 0-5 slide.

The defending AL East champions, who led the majors with 891 runs last season, batted .230 and averaged only 3.5 runs over their previous 16 games. The slump prompted manager John Gibbons to juggle his lineup in unusual ways, putting power hitter Jose Bautista in the leadoff spot with sluggers Josh Donaldson and Edwin Encarnacion right behind him.

They hadn't produced much there, but this time Toronto got an early two-run double from slumping No. 9 batter Ryan Goins and pulled away with two homers off reliever Chasen Shreve in a four-run seventh.

Ivan Nova (3-2) threw well again for New York (22-23) but lost for the first time in four starts since moving from the bullpen to the rotation. Trailing 3-1 with two outs in the seventh, he was pulled after hitting Encarnacion with a pitch. Shreve quickly let the game get away by giving up two-run homers to Saunders and Martin.

On an 86-degree night at Yankee Stadium, Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius hit successive homers in the seventh off Estrada (2-2), who yielded four hits and three runs while walking four in seven innings.

The right-hander loaded the bases with nobody out in the third but limited the damage to one run on Brett Gardner's RBI groundout.

Pinch-hitter Austin Romine homered on the first pitch from Blue Jays reliever Chad Girodo in the ninth. Romine's only other major league home run came in August 2013.

Martin also ended a long drought with his leadoff shot to left field against his former team in the sixth. It was the first home run for Martin since Oct. 2 against Tampa Bay. He went 124 at-bats this season without connecting.

Martin began the night batting .172 with one extra-base hit, a double. He had his 11th career multihomer game, third with Toronto and first since Sept. 11, 2015, at Yankee Stadium.

Encarnacion added an RBI single in the eighth.


Yankees: Slumping 1B Mark Teixeira sat out because his neck stiffened again. Dustin Ackley started in place of Teixeira, who was scheduled to be examined by a doctor. How much time Teixeira misses will depend on how he responds to treatment, manager Joe Girardi said. The 36-year-old switch-hitter missed two games May 10-11 because of a neck problem and was given shots to alleviate the discomfort. ... DH Alex Rodriguez is expected to rejoin the lineup Thursday. The 40-year-old Rodriguez, on the disabled list since May 4 with a strained right hamstring, played his second rehab game for Double-A Trenton and went 1 for 2 with a two-run homer to center field. ... Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez, one of the team's top prospects, broke his right thumb Tuesday night at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and will be placed on the minor league disabled list.

Blue Jays: SS Troy Tulowitzki sat out with a sore right quadriceps that caused him to exit Tuesday night's game in the seventh inning. He said it's nothing to worry about and he plans to play Thursday. Goins made his third start of the season at shortstop. ... 2B Devon Travis was activated from the disabled list and batted eighth in his first major league game since July 28 last year. He had surgery on his left shoulder in the offseason.


New York LHP CC Sabathia (3-2, 3.41 ERA) makes his second start since coming off the disabled list when the teams play the series finale Thursday at 4:05 p.m., an unusual start time for a weekday game at Yankee Stadium. Sabathia is 15-6 with a 3.35 ERA in 22 career starts against Toronto. On the mound for the Blue Jays will be LHP J.A. Happ (5-2, 3.43).

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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