Tulowitzki hits grand slam; Blue Jays crush Reds
TORONTO — Troy Tulowitzki hit a grand slam, Justin Smoak belted a three-run shot and Russell Martin had a two-run homer as the Toronto Blue Jays crushed the Cincinnati Reds, 17-2, in interleague baseball action Monday night.
Martin gave Toronto the lead in the second inning with a rainbow shot just inside the right-field foul screen. Tulowitzki broke the game open by clearing the bases in the third and Smoak put the Blue Jays’ run total into double digits an inning later.
Kendrys Morales, Smoak and Martin each scored three runs as the Blue Jays (24-27) won for the sixth time in seven games.
Devon Travis and Ezequiel Carrera had four hits apiece and Marcus Stroman worked six innings for his team-leading sixth win of the season.
The final score line could have been much worse for the Reds (24-26). The Blue Jays, who had 23 hits in all, left 13 men on base.
Toronto improved to 3-1 on its 10-game homestand.
Cincinnati leadoff man Billy Hamilton used his blinding speed to score the game’s opening run in the first inning. He reached on a bunt single, stole second, went to third on a fielder’s choice and scored on Adam Duvall’s single.
In the second, an infield single and two walks by Cincinnati starter Lisalverto Bonilla loaded the bases for Smoak. He lashed a ball down the first-base line that Toronto native Joey Votto snared to prevent extra bases but Donaldson still came home on the play.
Martin followed with a walk to end Bonilla’s night and set the stage for Tulowitzki, who turned on an 0-1 pitch from Robert Stephenson for his fourth career grand slam and second homer of the year.
In the fourth, Jose Bautista reached on a double and Morales walked ahead of Smoak’s 12th homer of the season.
The Blue Jays tacked on three more runs in the fifth. Tulowitzki came to the plate with the bases loaded again but grounded into a forceout to end the inning.
Duvall hit a solo shot in the sixth inning for Cincinnati. The two-out blast was his 14th home run of the season. The Blue Jays kept the offence rolling late in the game. Martin drove in Morales with a double in the seventh and Travis added an RBI single. Toronto tacked on two more runs in the eighth inning.
Stroman (6-2) allowed five hits and two earned runs while striking out five. Bonilla (0-3) issued five walks and allowed three hits and six earned runs over 2 1/3 innings.
Announced attendance at Rogers Centre was 29,844. NOTES: Martin now has four homers on the season . ... Toronto left-hander J.A. Happ (0-3, 4.50 earned-run average) is scheduled to make his return Tuesday night after a stint on the disabled list (elbow). The Reds will counter with right-hander Asher Wojciechowski . ... Travis extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a single in the third inning . ... Votto was presented with the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame’s Tip O’Neill Award earlier.
Cincinnati Reds reliever Robert Stephenson returns to the mound after giving up a grand slam to Jays’ Troy Tulowitzki in the third inning of interleague baseball action Monday in Toronto. The Blue Jays had 23 hits and three home runs in the contest.