The Toronto Blue Jays could not find a consistent offensive game on Saturday afternoon in Baltimore, dropping game two of their series 4-2 against the Orioles.
Ezequiel Carrera, starting in right-field and batting leadoff for the injured Jose Bautista, led the Blue Jays with his third home run of the season and a pair of outfield assists early in the game, one of which resulted in a highlight-reel double-play after a leaping catch at the wall.
Edwin Encarnacion continued to see the ball very well, going 1-for-2 with a single and a pair of walks. Devon Travis drove in Toronto’s other run on a double while his partner in the middle-infield, Troy Tulowitzki, was 0-for-4 in his first game back from the disabled list, dropping his batting average back down to .199.
Justin Smoak had a difficult day at the plate, too, striking out in three of his four at bats to leave five runners on base.
R.A. Dickey gave the Blue Jays a strong outing, but run support was again the knuckleballer’s biggest foe. Dickey threw six innings, allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits. Jesse Chavez tossed a perfect seventh, striking out one, but Jason Grilli found some trouble in the eighth. The veteran right-hander allowed Baltimore’s fourth run, giving up two hits and a walk while throwing 23 pitches.
Orioles’ closer Zach Britton loaded the bases in the top of the ninth and gave the Blue Jays one final shot. After Travis singled, both Darwin Barney (pinch-hitting for Josh Thole) and Russell Martin walked to bring up Josh Donaldson who grounded into a game-ending double play.
The series finale goes at 1:35 p.m. tomorrow afternoon with Marcus Stroman (6-2, 4.76 ERA) scheduled to face Baltimore’s Chris Tillman (9-1, 2.87 ERA), whose improved fastball already has him looking for his 10th win of the season.