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17.01.2019 08:56
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TORONTO (AP) — Toronto first baseman Justin Smoak figured teammate Randal Grichuk never saw it coming.Grichuk was injured in a bizarre collision with a security guard’s chair [url=]Paul Konerko Jersey[/url] , and replacement Tesocar Hernandez hit a three-run homer as the Blue Jays beat the Cleveland Indians 6-2 on Sunday.The Indians’ magic number to lock up their third straight AL Central title stayed at five.Grichuk was checked for a possible concussion after slamming face-first into the guard’s metal stool while chasing Brandon Guyer’s foul fly in the fourth inning. Initial concussion tests were negative, the Blue Jays said, but more tests will be done Monday. He’s been diagnosed with multiple facial cuts but no fractures.As Grichuk and Smoak sprinted toward the ball, a security staffer seated along the wall stood up and backed away from the area, carrying his stool and seemingly unaware the outfielder was closing in. Grichuk slid and made the catch, but crashed into the stool the staffer was holding by his side.“I peeked at him and I saw him sliding, trying to make a play there, so I peeled out,” Smoak said. “All of a sudden I heard him get clocked with a chair in the face. Scary right there for a second, but hopefully he’s all right.”Grichuk stayed down for several minutes and was treated on the field by Blue Jays trainers. When he stood up to walk off, television images showed a long, swollen mark on his face, running across his nose and between his eyes.Smoak said it’s difficult to be aware of obstacles, especially because Toronto’s domed roof makes it hard to look away from flyballs.“We’re worried about each other and the ball at the same time,” Smoak said. “There’s no chance either of us was thinking about the security guard.”Manager John Gibbons said he saw Grichuk in the clubhouse following the game.“He was laughing a bit, so that was a good sign,” Gibbons said. “He’s a pretty boy, you don’t want to hurt that face.”Hernandez entered the game when Grichuk exited, and homered in the eighth.Smoak connected off Mike Clevinger (11-8) in the first [url=][/url] , his team-leading 24th.Francisco Lindor hit a solo homer off Thomas Pannone (2-1) in the third, his career-best 34th and third of the series. Smoak answered with a two-out RBI single in the bottom half.Brandon Barnes chased Pannone with a one-out homer in the Cleveland seventh, his first since 2015. Ryan Tepera came on and struck out the next two batters.Michael Brantley singled off left-hander Jose Fernandez to begin the eighth but righty Jake Petricka came on and struck out Jose Ramirez, Edwin Encarnacion, and Yandy Diaz.David Paulino got two outs in the ninth but put two runners on before Ken Giles came on and got Lindor to ground out, earning his 20th save in as many opportunities.Making his third career start in place of right-hander Marcus Stroman (blister), Pannone allowed two runs and four hits in 6 1-3 innings against his former team.A Double-A All-Star in the Indians organization last season, Pannone was dealt to Toronto for reliever Joe Smith on July 31, 2017.“It was a great opportunity to go out there and face the team that traded me last season,” Pannone said. “It was definitely extra special.”Indians manager Terry Francona said Pannone “took the sting out of our bats.”“He doesn’t light up the radar gun,” Francona said, “It just seemed like he got past our barrels, had us reaching. A lot of popups.”30-30Cleveland’s Jose Ramirez stole second base in the first, becoming the third 30-homer, 30-steal player in Indians history. Joe Carter did it in 1987 and Grady Sizemore in 2008. Ramirez is the first 30-30 player in the big leagues since 2012, when Ryan Braun and Mike Trout both reached the mark.ROWDY’S RUN ENDSBlue Jays rookie Rowdy Tellez went 0 for 4, his first hitless game since making his debut last week. Tellez set a Blue Jays record Saturday, becoming the first player in team history with eight hits in his first four games.HOME IS WHERE THE HOMERS AREThe Blue Jays have 103 home runs at home, second in the AL to the Yankees (127).TRAINER’S ROOMIndians: LHP Andrew Miller (left shoulder) is expected to be activated off the 10-day disabled Monday.Blue Jays: Hernandez went to left field after Grichuk’s injury [url=]Nellie Fox Jersey[/url] , with Billy McKinney moving from left to right. … Toronto activated INF Yangervis Solarte off the 10-day DL. Solarte suffered a strained right oblique in an Aug. 11 game against Tampa Bay.UP NEXTIndians: RHP Corey Kluber (18-7, 2.75) starts the opener of a three-game series at Tampa Bay on Monday. The major league leader in wins, Kluber is 2-0 with a 0.66 ERA in his past two outings. The Rays have not named a starter.Blue Jays: After an off day, LHP Ryan Borucki (3-4, 4.39) starts the opener of a three-game series at Boston on Tuesday night. Borucki is 1-0 in two starts against the Red Sox this season, allowing 11 runs in eight innings. LHP Chris Sale (12-4, 1.97) starts for Boston. WASHINGTON — Not too many things have gone as planned for the Washington Nationals this season.Expected to contend for a third straight National League East title, the Nationals instead are closer to elimination than a playoff berth.Right-hander Max Scherzer, however, has been a constant for Washington. Every fifth day Scherzer (16-6, 2.28) gives the Nationals a chance to win.Article continues below ...“Watching him, he’s the best. He really is. Watching him prepare on a daily basis has been incredible,” Nationals manager Dave Martinez said. “He competes every day. His work ethic is far beyond what I’ve ever seen. The mental part, the physical part of it.“For four days, he puts his body through a lot and his mind through a lot to get ready for his opponents on the fifth day.”Scherzer, seeking his third straight NL Cy Young Award, enters Saturday atop the National League in wins (16), strikeouts (260), innings pitched (193.2) and opponent’s batting average (.179) [url=][/url] , and third in ERA (2.28).He’s allowed as many as four earned runs in only two starts this season, the last on July 7. Last time out he surrendered three runs in seven innings of a no-decision in a game against the Cardinals that Washington won. He struck out 11 and walked one.The Nationals are 20-9 in games Scherzer has started.Scherzer, 3-1 with a 2.45 ERA in seven starts against the Cubs, will start the first game of what is now a Saturday doubleheader beginning at 3:05 ET.Friday night was frustrating for everyone who dared venture to Nationals Park. The game was delayed 81 minutes by rain before it started.Then, with two outs in the top of the second inning, the rain and lightning returned. After two hours and 55 minutes, with the rain having stopped, the game was postponed by Major League Baseball.Cubs manager Joe Maddon said earlier in the day he was hoping to get the game in.“It’s supposed to rain here for three days,” Maddon said. “We can plow through. We’ve done that already this year so many times. We’d rather plow through this than a doubleheader and a make-up game. We’re going through 23 in a row, so we need to play this.”Left-hander Jaime Garcia (3-6, 5.93) will pitch the first game for the Cubs. His contract was purchased from Triple-A Iowa on Tuesday. Garcia is 5-3 with a 2.91 ERA in nine career starts against the Nationals.Chicago right-hander Cole Hamels (4-0, 1.00 since joining the Cubs) was originally scheduled to oppose Scherzer in Saturday’s game, but now with the doubleheader, he’ll pitch the nightcap. The Cubs acquired Hamels from the Rangers at the July trade deadline and have gone 6-1 in his starts.Hamels has fanned 43 and walked 12 in 45 innings for Chicago and has let to allow a home run. He was named the National League Pitcher of the Month for August. Last time out, he gave up two runs in six innings against the Brewers.The former Philadelphia Phillie is 16-9 with a 2.63 ERA in 36 career starts against the Nationals.Washington did not immediately name its Game 2 starter.The Nationals on Friday activated left-hander Sean Doolittle from the 10-day disabled list. The Washington closer missed 54 games with a stress reaction in his left foot.Doolittle is 3-2 with a 1.45 ERA. His 22 saves (in 23 chances) are tied for eighth best in the National League.“It’s tough mentally for different reasons to have to be on the sidelines and watch kind of the way the second half of the season unfolded for us and not being able to contribute, not being out there with the guys was really tough,” Doolittle said.

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