Estrada goes 8, Donaldson homers twice as Jays beat Twins

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Marco Estrada is getting hot just as his contract with the Toronto Blue Jays is nearing an end.

Not that he's talking free agency just yet. Saturday night was all about playing spoiler to the contending Minnesota Twins.

Estrada worked eight efficient innings, Josh Donaldson homered twice among his four hits and the Blue Jays beat the Twins 7-2.

Minnesota's loss clinched the AL Central for the Cleveland Indians and gave teams a chance to gain on the Twins for the final AL wild card. Minnesota entered the day two games ahead of the Los Angeles Angels.

''We can still stop other teams from going, I guess,'' Estrada said.

A free agent at the end of this season, Estrada (9-8) continues to rebound from a tough nine-game stretch earlier this year where he went 0-5 with a 9.52 ERA. Since then, he's 5-1 and extended his string of allowing three earned runs or fewer to nine of his last 11 outings.

''I'd like to finish strong, open up some eyes maybe and hopefully get the chance to come back here,'' Estrada said. ''You want to keep winning. It's a little late now, but we're still out there busting our butts.''

He sure looked like a playoff pitcher Saturday, allowing two homers but not much else. Aside from solo shots by Eddie Rosario and Eduardo Escobar, the Twins didn't get a runner in scoring position until Joe Mauer's leadoff double in the ninth, when the game was already well out of reach.

''He kept us off balance pretty much all night and it's tough when a guy's on like that,'' said Byron Buxton, who ended his six-game hitting streak.

Donaldson gave the Blue Jays a lead in the first by sending a first-pitch shot off Adalberto Mejia (4-6) into the second deck in left-center. He also led off the fourth with a single and came around to score on Jose Bautista's single. A batter later, Kendrys Morales drove in Justin Smoak with a single.

Estrada took care of the rest, retiring 12 of his final 15 batters after he allowed three hits and a walk with four strikeouts.

''After the trade deadline, I think he just kind of kicked it back in gear,'' manager John Gibbons said. ''We knew it was just a little blip that he'd pull through.''

Matt Dermody pitched a scoreless ninth for Toronto.

BAUTISTA BUSTS HIS SKID

Nothing like a trip to Minnesota for Bautista to cure his 0-for-17 skid. Bautista, whose 14 homers at Target Field are the most of any non-Twins player at the ballpark, had three hits and an RBI. ''I expect to see him hit a home run before he leaves here,'' Gibbons said. ''He normally does.''

DONALDSON'S BOMBS

Donaldson now leads the AL with 19 homers since the All-Star break. ''I've been seeing a lot of fastballs up in the zone pretty much all season long,'' he said. ''There's times when I'm swinging and missing at it, and there's times when I'm connecting with it. The times that I connect with it, good things normally happen for me.''

MEJIA'S RETURN

Making his first start since a biceps injury last month sidelined him for 35 games, Mejia seemed to recover after Donaldson's homer and retired eight straight batters before getting chased in the fourth. Still, the rookie said he felt good afterward. ''Some of the selection and location might have been off a little bit and he had to pay the price for that,'' Molitor said.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Twins: Molitor said the plan is keep Miguel Sano (shin) in Minnesota when the team starts a 10-game trip in New York next week. Molitor added it's possible the first baseman may need to go to New York for a personal reason. ''It just hasn't been a great week,'' the manager said of Sano's slow recovery.

UP NEXT:

Blue Jays: RHP Joe Biagini (3-10) returns to the mound after throwing a career-high eight innings on Tuesday in a 3-2 win against Baltimore.

Twins: RHP Kyle Gibson (10-10) tries to even the four-game series. He last pitched against Toronto on Aug. 27, when he threw 6 2/3 innings and gave up two runs on seven hits in Minnesota's 7-2 victory.

---

More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/tag/MLBbaseball

Copyright 2017 by STATS. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS is strictly prohibited.

123456789RHE
Blue JaysTOR70-79
1002000317110
TwinsMIN77-71
000010010241
  • W: M. Estrada (9-8)L: A. Mejia (4-6)
  • HR: TOR - J. Donaldson 2 (28), MIN - E. Escobar (19), E. Rosario (24)
PLAYERS OF THE GAME
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
T. Hernandez LF30000001.286.311.524.8350.0
a- E. Carrera LF21100000.291.365.422.7862.0
J. Donaldson 3B54422001.266.389.542.93118.0
J. Smoak 1B42110120.278.361.550.9115.0
J. Bautista RF40310100.208.313.377.6906.0
K. Morales DH40220021.249.305.450.7553.0
R. Refsnyder DH10000001.167.253.218.4710.0
K. Pillar CF40000025.259.304.413.717-1.0
R. Martin C30000102.223.351.382.7331.0
D. Barney 2B30000010.233.269.317.586-0.5
b- R. Goins 2B10000013.225.277.335.612-0.5
R. Urena SS30000123.240.309.360.6690.0
  • a-singled for Hernandez in the 8th
  • b-struck out for Barney in the 8th
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
B. Dozier 2B40100000.259.346.481.8261.0
J. Mauer 1B40100001.303.383.414.7982.0
J. Polanco SS40000001.254.310.407.7170.0
E. Rosario LF31111111.292.330.508.8386.5
B. Buxton CF40000002.253.314.417.7310.0
M. Kepler RF30000011.245.315.423.739-0.5
E. Escobar 3B31111000.251.309.448.7576.0
J. Castro C30000010.231.326.380.706-0.5
R. Grossman DH30000010.249.369.394.763-0.5
    BATTING
    • 2B - J. Smoak (25), J. Bautista (26)
    • HR - J. Donaldson 2 (28)
    • RBI - J. Donaldson 2 (69), J. Smoak (88), J. Bautista (59), K. Morales 2 (80)
    BATTING
    • 2B - J. Mauer (33)
    • HR - E. Rosario (24), E. Escobar (19)
    • RBI - E. Rosario (70), E. Escobar (63)
    BASERUNNING
    • SB - J. Donaldson (2)
    FIELDING
    • DP - J. Mauer, B. Dozier, J. Polanco
    • E - B. Dozier (5)
    PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
    M. Estrada (W, 9-8)8.03221424.841.3630.0
    M. Dermody1.01000004.421.152.0
    PITCHERSIP
    M. Estrada (W, 9-8)8.0
    M. Dermody1.0
    PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
    A. Mejia (L, 4-6)3.05330314.621.57-2.5
    D. Gee2.11001203.831.415.0
    A. Busenitz1.20000301.650.994.5
    T. Hildenberger0.04331003.111.09-8.0
    M. Tonkin1.00001205.521.843.0
    G. Moya1.01111014.501.500.0
    PITCHING
    • Pitches-Strikes - M. Estrada 101-70, M. Dermody 12-9
    • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - M. Estrada 2-18, M. Dermody 1-2
    • Batters Faced - M. Estrada 28, M. Dermody 4
    PITCHING
    • IBB - T. Hildenberger (2)
    • Pitches-Strikes - A. Mejia 57-39, D. Gee 34-22, A. Busenitz 24-17, T. Hildenberger 13-7, M. Tonkin 17-11, G. Moya 18-10
    • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - D. Gee 2-2, A. Busenitz 1-1
    • Batters Faced - A. Mejia 14, D. Gee 8, A. Busenitz 5, T. Hildenberger 5, M. Tonkin 4, G. Moya 5
    PLAYERS OF THE GAME
    123456789RHE
    Blue JaysTOR70-79
    1002000317110
    TwinsMIN77-71
    000010010241
    HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
    T. Hernandez LF30000001.286.311.524.8350.0
    a- E. Carrera LF21100000.291.365.422.7862.0
    J. Donaldson 3B54422001.266.389.542.93118.0
    J. Smoak 1B42110120.278.361.550.9115.0
    J. Bautista RF40310100.208.313.377.6906.0
    K. Morales DH40220021.249.305.450.7553.0
    R. Refsnyder DH10000001.167.253.218.4710.0
    K. Pillar CF40000025.259.304.413.717-1.0
    R. Martin C30000102.223.351.382.7331.0
    D. Barney 2B30000010.233.269.317.586-0.5
    b- R. Goins 2B10000013.225.277.335.612-0.5
    R. Urena SS30000123.240.309.360.6690.0
    Total377116241017-----
    • a-singled for Hernandez in the 8th
    • b-struck out for Barney in the 8th
    HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
    B. Dozier 2B40100000.259.346.481.8261.0
    J. Mauer 1B40100001.303.383.414.7982.0
    J. Polanco SS40000001.254.310.407.7170.0
    E. Rosario LF31111111.292.330.508.8386.5
    B. Buxton CF40000002.253.314.417.7310.0
    M. Kepler RF30000011.245.315.423.739-0.5
    E. Escobar 3B31111000.251.309.448.7576.0
    J. Castro C30000010.231.326.380.706-0.5
    R. Grossman DH30000010.249.369.394.763-0.5
    Total312422146-----
      BATTING
      • 2B - J. Smoak (25), J. Bautista (26)
      • HR - J. Donaldson 2 (28)
      • RBI - J. Donaldson 2 (69), J. Smoak (88), J. Bautista (59), K. Morales 2 (80)
      BATTING
      • 2B - J. Mauer (33)
      • HR - E. Rosario (24), E. Escobar (19)
      • RBI - E. Rosario (70), E. Escobar (63)
      BASERUNNING
      • SB - J. Donaldson (2)
      FIELDING
      • DP - J. Mauer, B. Dozier, J. Polanco
      • E - B. Dozier (5)
      PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
      M. Estrada (W, 9-8)8.03221424.841.3630.0
      M. Dermody1.01000004.421.152.0
      Total9.0422142---
      PITCHERSIP
      M. Estrada (W, 9-8)8.0
      M. Dermody1.0
      Total9.0
      PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
      A. Mejia (L, 4-6)3.05330314.621.57-2.5
      D. Gee2.11001203.831.415.0
      A. Busenitz1.20000301.650.994.5
      T. Hildenberger0.04331003.111.09-8.0
      M. Tonkin1.00001205.521.843.0
      G. Moya1.01111014.501.500.0
      Total9.011774102---
      PITCHERSIP
      A. Mejia (L, 4-6)3.0
      D. Gee2.1
      A. Busenitz1.2
      T. Hildenberger0.0
      M. Tonkin1.0
      G. Moya1.0
      Total9.0
      PITCHING
      • Pitches-Strikes - M. Estrada 101-70, M. Dermody 12-9
      • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - M. Estrada 2-18, M. Dermody 1-2
      • Batters Faced - M. Estrada 28, M. Dermody 4
      PITCHING
      • IBB - T. Hildenberger (2)
      • Pitches-Strikes - A. Mejia 57-39, D. Gee 34-22, A. Busenitz 24-17, T. Hildenberger 13-7, M. Tonkin 17-11, G. Moya 18-10
      • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - D. Gee 2-2, A. Busenitz 1-1
      • Batters Faced - A. Mejia 14, D. Gee 8, A. Busenitz 5, T. Hildenberger 5, M. Tonkin 4, G. Moya 5
      • 9TH INNING
        Donaldson homered to center72
      • 8TH INNING
        Escobar homered to right62
        Morales singled to center, Smoak scored, Bautista to second61
        Bautista singled to shallow right, Carrera and Donaldson scored, Smoak to second on 2nd baseman Dozier fielding error51
      • 5TH INNING
        Rosario homered to center31
      • 4TH INNING
        Morales reached on an infield single to shortstop, Smoak scored, Bautista to second30
        Smoak doubled to left center, Donaldson scored20
      • 1ST INNING
        Donaldson homered to left center10
      • 9TH INNING
        • Gabriel Moya relieved Michael Tonkin
        • E. Carrera: Ball, Carrera flied out to deep center
        • J. Donaldson: Strike looking, Donaldson homered to center
        • J. Smoak: Ball, Foul, Ball, Smoak lined out to center
        • J. Bautista: Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Bautista walked
        • R. Refsnyder: Ball, Strike swinging, Strike looking, Refsnyder flied out to deep center
        • Middle of the 9th (1 Run, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
        • Matt Dermody relieved Marco Estrada
        • J. Mauer: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Ball, Mauer doubled to center
        • J. Polanco: Ball, Strike swinging, Polanco flied out to center
        • E. Rosario: Strike swinging, Rosario grounded out to first, Mauer to third
        • B. Buxton: Strike swinging, Buxton flied out to deep right
        • End of the 9th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 8TH INNING
        • Trevor Hildenberger relieved Alan Busenitz
        • Ezequiel Carrera hit for Teoscar Hernandez
        • E. Carrera: Foul, Ball, Carrera reached on an infield single to second
        • J. Donaldson: Ball, Donaldson singled to center, Carrera to third
        • J. Smoak: Ball, Strike swinging, Donaldson stole second, Ball, Smoak intentionally walked
        • J. Bautista: Ball, Ball, Bautista singled to shallow right, Carrera and Donaldson scored, Smoak to second on 2nd baseman Dozier fielding error
        • K. Morales: Foul, Morales singled to center, Smoak scored, Bautista to second
        • Michael Tonkin relieved Trevor Hildenberger
        • K. Pillar: Ball, Foul, Pillar flied out to deep left
        • R. Martin: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Ball, Foul, Ball, Martin walked, Bautista to third, Morales to second
        • Ryan Goins hit for Darwin Barney
        • Rob Refsnyder ran for Kendrys Morales
        • R. Goins: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Ball, Strike swinging, Goins struck out swinging
        • R. Urena: Strike swinging, Foul, Strike swinging, Urena struck out swinging
        • Middle of the 8th (3 Runs, 4 Hits, 1 Error)
        • M. Estrada Pitching:
        • E. Escobar: Ball, Strike looking, Escobar homered to right
        • J. Castro: Strike looking, Strike looking, Castro fouled out to third
        • R. Grossman: Foul, Grossman fouled out to third
        • B. Dozier: Strike looking, Ball, Dozier flied out to center
        • End of the 8th (1 Run, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 7TH INNING
        • A. Busenitz Pitching:
        • R. Martin: Martin lined out to center
        • D. Barney: Foul, Ball, Foul, Foul, Barney grounded out to pitcher
        • R. Urena: Strike looking, Ball, Strike swinging, Strike looking, Urena struck out looking
        • Middle of the 7th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • M. Estrada Pitching:
        • J. Polanco: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Polanco flied out to deep right
        • E. Rosario: Ball, Ball, Ball, Ball, Rosario walked
        • B. Buxton: Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Buxton popped out to shortstop
        • M. Kepler: Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Kepler struck out swinging
        • End of the 7th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 6TH INNING
        • D. Gee Pitching:
        • J. Smoak: Foul, Ball, Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Smoak struck out looking
        • J. Bautista: Ball, Strike looking, Strike looking, Bautista doubled to left center
        • Alan Busenitz relieved Dillon Gee
        • K. Morales: Ball, Foul, Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Morales struck out looking
        • K. Pillar: Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Ball, Foul, Ball, Foul, Foul, Strike swinging, Pillar struck out swinging
        • Middle of the 6th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
        • M. Estrada Pitching:
        • J. Castro: Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Castro struck out swinging
        • R. Grossman: Foul, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Strike swinging, Grossman struck out swinging
        • B. Dozier: Strike looking, Ball, Dozier singled to center
        • J. Mauer: Ball, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Foul, Mauer flied out to center
        • End of the 6th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 5TH INNING
        • D. Gee Pitching:
        • D. Barney: Strike looking, Foul, Foul, Ball, Foul tip, Barney struck out on foul tip
        • R. Urena: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Ball, Ball, Urena walked
        • T. Hernandez: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Foul, Pickoff attempt, Hernandez flied out to right
        • J. Donaldson: Donaldson grounded out to second
        • Middle of the 5th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • M. Estrada Pitching:
        • E. Rosario: Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Rosario homered to center
        • B. Buxton: Buxton flied out to deep center
        • M. Kepler: Strike swinging, Ball, Kepler popped out to first
        • E. Escobar: Strike looking, Ball, Strike (foul tip), Foul, Escobar fouled out to third
        • End of the 5th (1 Run, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 4TH INNING
        • A. Mejia Pitching:
        • J. Donaldson: Ball, Foul, Foul, Ball, Donaldson singled to left
        • J. Smoak: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Ball, Smoak doubled to left center, Donaldson scored
        • J. Bautista: Bautista singled to left, Smoak to third
        • K. Morales: Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Foul, Pickoff attempt to first, Ball, Foul, Morales reached on an infield single to shortstop, Smoak scored, Bautista to second
        • Dillon Gee relieved Adalberto Mejia
        • K. Pillar: Ball, Strike looking, Pillar flied out to left
        • R. Martin: Strike swinging, Strike looking, Ball, Martin grounded into double play shortstop to second to first, Morales out at second
        • Middle of the 4th (2 Runs, 4 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • M. Estrada Pitching:
        • B. Dozier: Dozier fouled out to first
        • J. Mauer: Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Mauer fouled out to third
        • J. Polanco: Ball, Strike swinging, Strike looking, Foul, Polanco popped out to shortstop
        • End of the 4th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 3RD INNING
        • A. Mejia Pitching:
        • D. Barney: Foul, Ball, Barney flied out to right
        • R. Urena: Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Urena lined out to first
        • T. Hernandez: Strike swinging, Ball, Strike swinging, Hernandez flied out to center
        • Middle of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • M. Estrada Pitching:
        • E. Escobar: Ball, Foul, Foul, Escobar grounded out to second
        • J. Castro: Strike looking, Castro popped out to shortstop
        • R. Grossman: Ball, Grossman fouled out to catcher
        • End of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 2ND INNING
        • A. Mejia Pitching:
        • K. Morales: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Morales struck out swinging
        • K. Pillar: Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Foul, Foul, Foul, Strike swinging, Pillar struck out swinging
        • R. Martin: Ball, Martin flied out to right
        • Middle of the 2nd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • M. Estrada Pitching:
        • E. Rosario: Strike looking, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Rosario struck out swinging
        • B. Buxton: Ball, Strike looking, Buxton lined out to left
        • M. Kepler: Strike looking, Ball, Kepler fouled out to first
        • End of the 2nd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 1ST INNING
        • A. Mejia Pitching:
        • T. Hernandez: Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Ball, Foul, Foul, Hernandez flied out to right
        • J. Donaldson: Donaldson homered to left center
        • J. Smoak: Foul, Strike swinging, Ball, Foul tip, Smoak struck out on foul tip
        • J. Bautista: Ball, Ball, Bautista flied out to center
        • Middle of the 1st (1 Run, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
        • M. Estrada Pitching:
        • B. Dozier: Strike looking, Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Dozier flied out to left
        • J. Mauer: Ball, Foul, Foul, Mauer grounded out to pitcher
        • J. Polanco: Ball, Strike (foul tip), Ball, Polanco flied out to deep right
        • End of the 1st (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)