Twins lose season-worst 10th straight, fall 9-6 to Jays
TORONTO (AP) — In a wretched season that can’t end soon enough, the Minnesota Twins keep sinking to new lows.
Josh Donaldson had his first career three-homer game, Troy Tulowitzki also went deep and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Twins 9-6 on Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.
Minnesota lost its season-worst 10th straight. The Twins have lost seven straight in Toronto.
“We’ve been through quite a few rough spots this year,” right-hander Kyle Gibson said. “We’re just looking for a break or the game to kind of turn it around and get back on a good streak.”
Rookie Pat Light, making his sixth appearance of the season, took the loss after giving up Donaldson’s go-ahead, two-run blast in the seventh.
“We’re calling on some people to try and get some big outs and there’s not a lot of experience there for us,” manager Paul Molitor said.
The Twins have lost four straight games in which they score five or more runs.
“We scored over 20 runs in three games and couldn’t find a way to win one,” Molitor said. “It shows you how they’re rolling offensively. It was too much offense and not enough pitching.”
Donaldson began his barrage with a solo homer off Gibson in the second.
Dozens of fans tossed hats onto the field to celebrate the home run hat trick after Donaldson, the AL MVP in 2015, hit a solo shot off Alex Wimmers in the eighth. Groundskeepers and even the Blue Jays’ mascot helped clear the hats away. Donaldson came out for a curtain call as the crowd of 47,444 roared their approval.
“I’ve never had a curtain call before so that was nice,” Donaldson said. “I tried to enjoy it for a second. (Edwin Encarnacion) was on deck after I hit the third one and he had a huge smile on his face. That kind of brought it into reality a little bit there. ”
Donaldson’s fourth multi-homer game this season and the 10th of his career also marked the 17th three-homer game in the majors this season.
“It doesn’t get any better than that,” manager John Gibbons said. “He’s heating up.”
Jose Bautista had his first three-hit game of the season for the AL East-leading Blue Jays.
Scott Feldman (7-4) earned the win by getting two outs in the seventh. Jason Grilli worked the eighth and Roberto Osuna finished.
Twins outfielders Robbie Grossman and Danny Santana collided while chasing a high fly by leadoff batter Bautista in the first. The ball dropped in for a double, and Bautista later scored on a sacrifice fly.
“You’d like to think that ball would be caught,” Molitor said.
Santana finished the inning but was replaced by Eddie Rosario in the second. Molitor said Santana would be placed on the disabled list with a sprained left left shoulder.
Minnesota led 5-2 after scoring four off R.A. Dickey in the fifth but the Blue Jays cut it to 5-4 in the sixth. Tulowitzki hit a leadoff homer, his 22nd, and Kevin Pillar doubled and scored on a base hit by Devon Travis.
EIGHT IS ENOUGH
The Twins have allowed eight or more runs in a franchise-high six straight games.
The Twins have been swept 13 times this season.
Twins: Triple-A OF Logan Schafer will join the team in Cleveland Monday to replace Santana.
Blue Jays: Donaldson hopped around in pain after fouling a ball off the outside of his right knee in the first. He was checked by the trainer and stayed in. ... C Josh Thole is expected to be designated for assignment Monday when the Blue Jays add C Dioner Navarro. Thole could return when rosters expand Thursday.
Twins: LHP Hector Santiago (10-8, 5.16) starts the opener of a three-game series at Cleveland on Monday. Santiago has not pitched since Aug. 20 because of a sore left thumb. RHP Trevor Bauer (9-6, 3.88) starts for the Indians.
Blue Jays: RHP Marco Estrada (7-6, 3.47) faces Orioles LHP Wade Miley (8-10, 5.51) as the Blue Jays begin a three-game series in Baltimore on Monday night. Estrada is 0-2 with an 8.36 ERA in his past three outings.