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Grichuk, Smoak, Hernandez hit HRs, Blue Jays top Twins 7-4


MINNEAPOLIS — Randal Grichuk, Justin Smoak and Teoscar Hernandez hit home runs and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Minnesota Twins 7-4 on Thursday.

Eric Sogard added a three-run double for the Blue Jays, who took three of four at Target Field. Eddie Rosario homered twice for the Twins.

Blue Jays relievers Thomas Pannone, Ryan Tepera, Tim Mayza and Joe Biagini (1-1) combined to allow one run in 3 1-3 innings. Ken Giles earned his sixth save in seven chances with a scoreless ninth.

Starter Clay Buchholz allowed three runs on six hits in 4 2-3 innings. The Toronto bullpen allowed two runs in 13 2-3 innings during the series.

Michael Pineda (2-1) had his worst start of the season, allowing six earned runs and seven hits in 3 2-3 innings. He struck out one batter, threw a wild pitch and allowed two home runs to equal his combined total from his first three starts.

Smoak hit a no-doubt, two-run shot and Sogard added a bases-clearing double as part of a five-run fourth that put the Blue Jays ahead 6-3.

Grichuk hit a solo home run in the first and Hernandez had a solo drive in the eighth. Toronto has hit three home runs in a game twice this season.

Rosario homered and Willians Astudillo and Jonathan Schoop both ended 0-for-15 stretches with singles in a three-run second inning for the Twins.

Ryne Harper tossed 3 1-3 innings of scoreless relief for Minnesota.


With a second-inning swipe, Minnesota's Byron Buxton extended his team record for consecutive stolen bases to 33. His last time caught stealing was May 23, 2017, at Baltimore. Vince Coleman holds the MLB-record with 50 consecutive stolen bases in 1988-89.


Blue Jays: Tepera (elbow inflammation) was reinstated from the 10-day disabled list. To make room, Toronto designated RHP Javy Guerra for assignment.


Blue Jays: Start a three-game series in Oakland on Friday with RHP Marcus Stroman (0-3, 1.99) to face the A's RHP Aaron Brooks (2-1, 4.24).

Twins: A six-game road trip starts Friday in Baltimore with RHP Jose Berrios (2-1, 2.30) scheduled to face Orioles RHP Alex Cobb (0-0. 3.18). Berrios has allowed seven earned runs in 27 1.3 innings.


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Mike Cook, The Associated Press