TORONTO (AP) — Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hit his 16th homer, then singled home the winning run in the 10th inning that lifted the Toronto Blue Jays over the Baltimore Orioles 7-6 Wednesday night.
Orioles rookie Adley Rutschman hit his first career home run and got his first two RBIs. Ryan Mountcastle homered twice, but Baltimore lost for the eighth time in nine meetings against Toronto.
Leading off the 10th against Félix Bautista (2-2), Guerrero lined a single to left that scored automatic runner Bo Bichette from second base.
“I told (on deck hitter Alejandro) Kirk just to be ready because I thought I was going to get walked,” Guerrero said through a translator.” When I saw they were going to pitch to me I said ‘Well, the game is over right here.’”
Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said he considered walking Guerrero, but decided against it.
“Bautista is not a ground ball guy, he throws 101 miles an hour,” Hyde explained. “If the count goes a little deeper, possibly. You’ve got Kirk and (Tesocar) Hernández, some really good hitters, behind him. Give Vladdy credit, he got on top of 100.”
Guerrero went 3 for 4 and scored three times as Toronto won for the 15th time in 20 games.
It was the first game-ending hit of his career.
“It means a lot to me,” Guerrero said through a translator. “It’s the first walk-off I’ve had in the big leagues so you’ve got to feel really happy with that.”
Matt Chapman and Hernández each hit two-run homers in the third inning. Toronto is 17-8 when hitting two or more homers.
Adam Cimber (7-2) worked one inning of relief for the win.
Baltimore trailed 6-2 through six innings but Mountcastle connected twice, his 11th and 12th of the season, to help the Orioles tie it.
Mountcastle made it 6-3 with a solo drive in the seventh off José Berríos. Cedric Mullins and Austin Hays added another run with back-to-back doubles off Yimi García in the eighth, and Mountcastle followed with a tying homer. It was the fifth multi-homer game of his career.
Rutschman, a catcher who was the overall No. 1 pick in the 2019 draft, hadn’t driven in a run through his first 20 games, spanning 74 at-bats. He hit a two-run homer in the fourth and also doubled.
“Good to see him get on that fastball and drive it out of the ballpark to dead center,” Hyde said. “I’m sure it must have felt good.”
Berríos allowed three runs and three hits in seven innings, walked none and struck out eight.
Baltimore’s Bruce Zimmerman allowed six runs and a season-worst 11 hits, including three home runs, in 4 2/3 innings. After allowing one home run in his first six starts of the season, Zimmerman has allowed 17 in his past seven outings, including three or more three times in his past five. He has struck out 16 batters in that span.
Orioles: 1B Trey Mancini (right hand) sat for the second straight game but said he’s feeling better after being hit by a pitch Monday. Manager Brandon Hyde said Mancini is day-to-day. … RHP Joey Krehbiel (shoulder) threw a bullpen session before the game. Krehbiel last pitched June 2.
Baltimore claimed INF Jonathan Araúz off waivers from Boston and optioned him to Triple-A Norfolk. To make room on the 40-man roster, LHP Zac Lowther was designated for assignment.
Guerrero said teammate George Springer approached him while the Blue Jays were in Detroit last weekend and asked whether he was having fun playing, forcing Guerrero to acknowledge that he wasn’t.
“I said to myself ’I’ve got to stop doing what I’m doing and enjoy this game,” Guerrero said through a translator.
Thirteen of Guerrero’s 16 home runs have gone 400 feet or farther.
Orioles RHP Tyler Wells (3-4, 3.86) starts against Blue Jays RHP Kevin Gausman in Thursday afternoon’s series finale. Baltimore drafted Gausman with the fourth overall pick in 2012 and he spent parts of six seasons with the Orioles. This will be Gausman’s first start against his former team.
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