Bichette’s home run in 12th leads Blue Jays over Yanks 6-5
TORONTO (AP) — Bo Bichette talked big before going out to bat in extra innings. Then the talented rookie delivered.
Bichette hit his first game-ending home run, a 12th-inning drive that gave the Toronto Blue Jays a 6-5 win over the New York Yankees on Friday night.
A 21-year-old who debuted on July 29, the son of former big leaguer Dante Bichette led off the 12th against Tyler Lyons (1-2) with his 11th home run.
“This kid’s going to be a star,” Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said. “He’s confident. Before the at-bat, he told a guy on the bench, ‘If they leave the left-hander on the mound and he throws me a slider, I’m going to take him deep.’”
Bichette took a slider for strike one and Lyons missed outside to even the count before the young shortstop drove a slider over the wall in left.
“I’ve never done that in my life at any level,” Bichette said.
So, how did Bichette know he was destined to drill the winning homer?
“I just had a feeling,” he said. “I was seeing the ball real well all day.”
Bichette has 28 extra-base hits in his first 41 games. Only Joe DiMaggio (30) and Ryan Braun (29) had more.
Wilmer Font (4-4) pitched two innings for the win and Randal Grichuk hit his career-best 26th home run, a solo shot. Toronto, at 58-90, is trying to avoid losing 100 games for the first time since 1977-79, its first three seasons.
Blue Jays left-hander Tim Mayza entered in the 10th but left after injuring his elbow on a wild ball four to his first batter, Didi Gregorius. An emotional Mayza went down on one knee and covered his face with his jersey before walking off with an athletic trainer. Mayza left the stadium to undergo an MRI.
“It was very sad,” Montoyo said. “I love Timmy Mayza. He’s done a great job and he’s part of our future. Of course, he was emotional, everyone was.”
Making his second career start and facing the team he grew up rooting for in Long Island, Blue Jays left-hander Anthony Kay allowed five runs and seven hits in 41/3 innings. Kay was obtained from the New York Mets in the July trade for Marcus Stroman.
New York trailed 3-0 before scoring all five runs in the fifth. Clint Frazier hit an RBI double and scored on Austin Romine’s single, Luke Voit hit into a run-scoring forceout and Gio Urshela had a two-run single.
The Yankees had just one hit from the sixth inning on, DJ LeMahieu’s two-out single in the sixth.
“Especially once we got to extra innings, we just couldn’t mount much,” manager Aaron Boone said.
Yankees right-hander Tommy Kahnle pitched a scoreless sixth inning. Kahnle had to be examined by trainers after slamming his hand against a sunflower seed bin following his appearance in the second game of Thursday’s doubleheader win in Detroit.
Cavan Biggio had a run-scoring single in the bottom off of the fifth against Masahiro Tanaka, who allowed four runs and eight hits in five innings. Tanaka is winless in three starts.
“I just couldn’t really hold them down when I needed to,” Tanaka said through a translator.
Toronto tied it in the seventh when right-hander Adam Ottavino balked home the tying run from third base while making a pickoff throw to first.
“I picked my foot up to turn but when I put it back down it touched the rubber again,” Ottavino said. “I think that’s against the rules.”
Ottavino has allowed runs in three straight appearances.
“I have to be sharper,” he said. “I’m trying to get as sharp as possible. I’m just not as sharp as I need to be right now.
A day after running into the right field wall at Detroit, New York’s Aaron Judge pinch hit in the 12th and struck out.
SENDING A MESSAGE
Montoyo removed 1B Rowdy Tellez after the fifth because Tellez didn’t run hard to first on his groundout to second.
New York is 7-3 in extra innings, while Toronto is 6-8.
A monarch butterfly landed on New York reliever Zack Britton’s glove before the lefty released a pitch in the eighth, flying away as Britton went into his windup.
Yankees: Boone said he’s optimistic C Gary Sánchez (strained groin) and DH Edwin Encarnación (oblique) will be able to return before the end of the season. Both left injured in either game of Thursday’s doubleheader sweep in Detroit. ... LHP J.A. Happ had a cortisone injection in his left biceps muscle and is expected to pitch against the Los Angeles Angels next week. ... RHP Dellin Betances (shoulder) allowed one run and two hits in one inning at Double-A Trenton, which won its first Eastern League title in six seasons. Betances struck out one and allowed a home run. ... RHP Luis Severino (shoulder) will make his season debut Tuesday against the Los Angeles Angels, while LHP Jordan Montgomery returns from Tommy John surgery to pitch against Toronto on Sunday, possibly after an opener. ... OF Giancarlo Stanton played four innings in left field in a simulated game at the Yankees’ minor league complex in Tampa, Florida and remains on track to rejoin the team at home next week.
Yankees LHP James Paxton (13-6, 3.96) has won a career-best eight straight starts. He is 3-1 with a 4.30 ERA in five starts in Toronto going into Saturday, including a no-hitter for Seattle in May 2018. Blue Jays RHP Jacob Waguespack (4-4, 4.55) is 0-3 with an 8.74 ERA over his past three starts.