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Toronto at Baltimore

W: S. Marcum (8-4) L: B. Matusz (3-10)
HR: TOR - Y. Escobar (1)   BAL - None

Blue Jays 10, Orioles 1

CBSSports.com wire reports

BALTIMORE -- Yunel Escobar ended his home run drought with the most productive swing of his life.

Escobar hit his first career grand slam during a six-run second inning, and the Toronto Blue Jays cruised past the Baltimore Orioles 10-1 Sunday for a three-game sweep.

Playing his third game with the Blue Jays since being traded by the Atlanta Braves, Escobar tied a career high with five RBI and got three hits to increase his batting average with Toronto to .462. He hit .238 with no homers in 75 games with Atlanta.

Escobar's shot off Brian Matusz (3-10) was the only grand slam he can remember hitting -- ever.

"Not even when he was a little kid," said bench coach Nick Levya, who served as Escobar's translator.

Escobar, a 200-pound shortstop, is no slugger. But after hitting 14 homers with Atlanta last year, he was tired of hearing about his failure to connect in 2010.

"A lot of people were asking him about it ... doubting whether he could hit [a home run] or not," Levya said. "He knows he can."

The long-awaited drive stretched Toronto's major league-leading home run total to 140 and enabled the Blue Jays to become the last AL team to hit a grand slam. Toronto has homered in a season-high 11 straight games, collecting 25 over that span.

John Buck had three hits and two RBI for the Blue Jays, who are 9-0 against Baltimore this season -- including 6-0 at Camden Yards. Toronto has won six of eight to move two games over .500 (47-45) for the first time since June 29.

Shaun Marcum (8-4) allowed one run and nine hits over five innings in his return from a 16-day stint on the disabled list with right elbow inflammation.

Nick Markakis had a third of those hits, going 3 for 3 to lift his career batting average against the right-hander to .462.

"I tell you what, he's the best player I've ever faced," Marcum said. "I think he's hitting 7.000 off me."

But the Orioles stranded 11 and went 1 for 15 with runners in scoring position. Baltimore is batting .228 with runners in scoring position this season, and interim manager Juan Samuel bristled when asked about the shortcoming after Sunday's game.

"Well, I just think we are beating a dead horse here," he said. "We've been talking about this all year. We just need to move on from that."

The last time Baltimore started 0-9 against an opponent was in 1988 against Cleveland.

"It's just one of those clubs," Samuel said of the Blue Jays. "They are a good offensive club that seems to have our number."

After an RBI single by Adam Jones put Baltimore up 1-0, Toronto took control in the second inning. A run-scoring single by Buck tied it, and two batters later Escobar sent a 1-0 pitch into the left-field seats.

"I was saying before he hit it that it would be a good time to get his first home run," Toronto manager Cito Gaston said. "That was a great time for it."

Vernon Wells capped the uprising with an RBI double that chased Matusz.

Matusz has failed to get past the third inning in his past two starts and is now tied with teammate Jeremy Guthrie for the most losses in the American League.

"It's just some mechanical adjustments I need to make," Matusz said. "When I'm staying down in the zone, I'm effective. When I'm not, I'm getting hit. Today was a tough day."

Buck singled in a run off Mark Hendrickson in the third inning, Adam Lind hit a run-scoring grounder in the fourth and Escobar added an RBI single in the fifth for a 9-1 lead.

Edwin Encarnacion drove in a ninth-inning run for Toronto with his third single of the game.


Orioles LF Corey Patterson was a late scratch with a bruised left heel. He's day-to-day. ... Lind extended his season-high hitting streak to 11 games. ... The crowd of 14,032 pushed Baltimore's home attendance over 1 million.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Players of the Game

Y. Escobar
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 1

J. Buck
AB 5
R 1
H 3
HR 0

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January 19, 2017
2017 Team Outlook: Toronto Blue Jays (1:28)
Toronto Blue Jays
Fred Lewis, LF4110014 .281
Yunel Escobar, SS4235000 .248
Jose Bautista, RF4100114 .233
Vernon Wells, CF5021021 .268
    Dewayne Wise, CF0000000 .233
Adam Lind, DH5111001 .216
Aaron Hill, 2B4100101 .195
Lyle Overbay, 1B5220022 .250
John Buck, C5132020 .279
Edwin Encarnacion, 3B5131013 .228
2B - Vernon Wells (28, Matusz), Lyle Overbay (20, Hendrickson), John Buck 2 (17, Matusz, Mata)
HR - Yunel Escobar (1, Matusz)
SH - Yunel Escobar (3)
RBI - Yunel Escobar 5 (24), Vernon Wells (51), Adam Lind (42), John Buck 2 (43), Edwin Encarnacion (25)
2-OUT RBI - Yunel Escobar 5 (11), Vernon Wells (23), Edwin Encarnacion (7)
Team LOB - 9
DP - Encarnacion-Hill-Overbay
Toronto Blue Jays
Shaun Marcum (W,8-4) 5911040 3.36
Brian Tallet 2000110 6.29
Casey Janssen 1100000 4.01
David Purcey 1200010 2.00
Pitches-Strikes - Shaun Marcum 83-60, Brian Tallet 22-14, Casey Janssen 12-9, David Purcey 24-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Shaun Marcum 2-9, Brian Tallet 3-1, Casey Janssen 2-1
Batters Faced - Shaun Marcum 24, Brian Tallet 6, Casey Janssen 4, David Purcey 5
Baltimore Orioles
Felix Pie, LF5010014 .333
Miguel Tejada, DH5110005 .275
Nick Markakis, RF5030012 .308
Ty Wigginton, 1B4000013 .248
Adam Jones, CF4021002 .276
Jake Fox, C4000035 .215
Scott Moore, 2B3000101 .240
Josh Bell, 3B4020001 .263
Cesar Izturis, SS4030000 .248
2B - Nick Markakis 2 (31, Marcum, Marcum)
RBI - Adam Jones (40)
2-OUT RBI - Adam Jones (17)
Team LOB - 11
Baltimore Orioles
Brian Matusz (L,3-10) 1.2566231 5.21
Mark Hendrickson 4.1633040 5.47
Frank Mata 3411020 7.79
HBP - Lewis (by Brian Matusz), Lewis (by Mark Hendrickson)
Pitches-Strikes - Brian Matusz 52-26, Mark Hendrickson 66-46, Frank Mata 28-19
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brian Matusz 2-0, Mark Hendrickson 6-3, Frank Mata 7-0
Batters Faced - Brian Matusz 13, Mark Hendrickson 20, Frank Mata 13
Game Information
Attendance - 14032
Game Time - 2:55
Temperature - 91
Umpires - Home - Tim Welke, First Base - Bill Welke, Second Base - Mike DiMuro, Third Base - Jim Reynolds