Tigers 5, Blue Jays 4
The Sports Xchange
By Chris Toman, The Sports Xchange
Tigers 5, Blue Jays 4
TORONTO -- Nick Castellanos and Eugenio Suarez hit back-to-back homers off closer Casey Janssen in the ninth inning to lead the Detroit Tigers to a 5-4 come-from-behind victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday night at Rogers Centre.
Left fielder J.D. Martinez hit a leadoff double to begin the ninth inning and Castellanos brought him home with a two-run blast to tie the score at 4. It was the third baseman's eighth home run of the season.
Suarez followed by depositing a 1-0 offering to dead-center field, the shortstop's fourth homer of the year, putting Detroit ahead 5-4 and silencing the crowd of 36,237.
Janssen (3-1) blew his third save of the season and the Blue Jays (61-56) fell to 1-6 in August.
Tigers closer Joe Nathan got out of a bases-loaded jam in the bottom of the ninth when Rajai Davis made a diving catch in foul territory down the left-field line to snag a slicing ball off the bat of catcher Josh Thole and end the nail-biter. It was Nathan's 24th save of the season.
Right-hander Al Alburquerque (3-1) threw 1 2/3 scoreless innings to pick up the win.
The Tigers (63-50) snapped a two-game losing streak and improved to 2-3 during their current nine-game road trip. Davis had a two-hit game against his former team and second baseman Ian Kinsler went 3-for-5 with two RBIs.
It wasn't all good news for the Tigers. Right-hander Anibal Sanchez was forced to leave the game prematurely.
Sanchez, who gave up four runs and 10 hits in 4 2/3 innings, grabbed at his upper body after throwing a pitch in the fifth inning and exited shortly after without facing another batter. He was diagnosed with a right pectoralis strain and will be further evaluated Saturday.
Blue Jays knuckleballer R.A. Dickey walked four batters, his most since May, but the right-hander held the Tigers to two runs and five hits while striking out six in six innings. He was in line for the win and has gone six-plus innings in 11 consecutive starts.
Every Blue Jays starter except Thole had a hit. Four of them had multi-hit games, including designated hitter Dioner Navarro (3-for-4) and first baseman Danny Valencia, who went 2-for-5 and drove in two runs.
After going ahead 1-0 on an RBI single from first baseman Danny Valencia in the first inning, the Blue Jays jumped all over Sanchez in the second.
Third baseman Munenori Kawasaki began the inning with a leadoff double and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt to bring second baseman Ryan Goins to the plate with one out. The No. 9 hitter laid down a suicide squeeze to cash Kawasaki, before left fielder Melky Cabrera and right fielder Jose Bautista hit back-to-back RBI singles to put Toronto in front 4-0.
The Tigers didn't wait long to respond against Dickey. Shortstop Eugenio Suarez drew a leadoff walk in the third inning and Davis followed with his second double of the game to put two runners in scoring position for Kinsler. The second baseman ripped a single up the middle, scoring both, to make it 4-2.
NOTES: Toronto INF Steve Tolleson was reinstated from the paternity list and joined the Blue Jays for Friday's game against the Tigers. Left-hander Rob Rasmussen was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo on Thursday to make room for Tolleson on the active roster. ... Blue Jays 1B/DH Adam Lind (foot) experienced back tightness on a rehab assignment with the rookie-level Gulf Coast League Blue Jays and was scratched from Friday's game. ... Tigers OF Andy Dirks (back) was taken off his rehab assignment at Triple-A Toledo with a hamstring injury. ... Detroit RF Torii Hunter (left hand) returned to the lineup after missing two games with a hand contusion as a result of getting hit by a pitch. Hunter wore padding over his left batting glove. ... Toronto RHP Marcus Stroman will face Tigers RHP Max Scherzer in the second game of the series Saturday.
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