An­other walkoff homer gives Blue Jays sweep

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - SPORTS - BY NEIL DAVID­SON

Steve Pearce and Kendrys Mo­rales ham­mered their way into the Blue Jays record book Thurs­day af­ter­noon as Toronto fin­ished off a four-game sweep of the Oak­land Ath­let­ics with panache.

There were some ca­su­al­ties en route to the 8-4 win, capped by Pearce’s grand slam in the 10th in­ning. Man­ager John Gib­bons, starter Mar­cus Stro­man and catcher Rus­sell Martin were all ejected in the fifth in­ning in a beef with home plate um­pire Will Lit­tle.

Toronto trailed 3-1 at the time.

Fast for­ward to the ninth and Mo­rales, whose homer in the ninth had given the Jays a 3-2 walkoff win the night be­fore, hit his sec­ond solo home run of the af­ter­noon to tie the game at 4-4.

Af­ter a 1-2-3 10th in­ning by closer Roberto Osuna (3-0), Toronto went to work on for­mer Jay Liam Hen­driks (3-2). Walks to Miguel Mon­tero, Justin Smoak and fi­nally Mo­rales with two outs loaded the bases, set­ting the stage for Pearce to drive home the fi­nal nail with a blast deep to left on a 3-2 count.

It marked the first walkoff homers in back-to-back games in fran­chise his­tory. Pearce beamed as he cir­cled the bases on his sec­ond ca­reer grand slam and first walkoff homer. He joins Ge­orge Bell (1988) and Gregg Zaun (2008) as the only Jays to hit a walkoff slam.

“It felt good off the bat,” the soft-spo­ken Pearce said.

“Our bullpen came in and did a great job and we found a way to get it done. So it was just a great day,” he added.

Now Toronto (48-54) has to keep the wins com­ing with the Los An­ge­les An­gels com­ing to town.

It had looked like Mar­cus Semien’s eighth-in­ning RBI sin­gle would give the Ath­let­ics a 4-3 win. But Mo­rales’ ninth-in­ning blast kept things go­ing.

It was his 20th home run of the sea­son. Mo­rales leads the ma­jors this sea­son with four ninth-in­ning homers that have helped his team tie or take the lead.

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