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Springer hits two three-run homers as Blue Jays dump Yankees

Toronto Blue Jays Vladimir Guerrero Jr., George Springer - The Canadian Press

Toronto Blue Jays outfielder George Springer started to see signs three weeks ago that his dismal season was about to turn around.

Springer has proof after hitting a pair of three-run homers and a single - his second straight three-hit effort - in a 9-2 victory over the New York Yankees on Thursday.

His outburst pushed the Blue Jays (37-43) to back-to-back wins, while the Yankees (52-31) extended their losing streak to a season-high four games before 36,423 at Rogers Centre.

“It’s great for him," Blue Jays manager John Schneider said. "You know that I love it. You know coming off the three-hit night in Boston with a homer and then tonight, that's what we have known from George."

Springer reached base for a fourth time in his final at-bat because of a catcher-interference call.

“Those were great swings," Schneider said. "The single up the middle as well. He deserves a lot of credit, him and the hitting coaches for continuing to grind. He’s been a great player for a long time."

He wasn't so great in the first three months of the season. Springer did not provide details on what he's working on, just that he's put in a lot of hours behind the scenes to get back on track.

“There’s been a lot of stuff I’ve been trying to do to get myself in a position to help us win," Springer said. "I’m never going to quit. I understand I need to be better. I’ll never back away from that. I’ll own that."

On Tuesday in Boston, Springer hit his first homer since June 4 and drove in two runs. Two nights later, he smashed a three-run second-deck homer down the left-field line in the first inning against the Yankees.

A broken-bat bloop double over first base from Vladimir Guerrero Jr., scored Bo Bichette and a Justin Turner dribbler down the line that hit the bag at first had given Toronto a 2-0 lead.

Springer, batting fifth in the lineup, knocked in Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Turner in the second inning with another second-deck blast off Yankees starter Carlos Rodon (9-5), this time over the wall in left-centre field.

Guerrero lifted a solo shot off reliever Phil Bickford in the sixth inning for his 11th homer of the year. He has four homers and seven extra-base hits in his last four games.

Toronto starter Jose Berrios (7-6) kept the visitor bats quiet until a two-run homer from Trent Grisham in the fifth inning. Oswaldo Cabrera was on first base after Berrios hit him with a pitch.

Berrios went seven innings, yielding two runs on two hits with eight strikeouts and three walks. This was his 12th straight home start in which he went six innings or more.

He relied on an effective fastball against the powerful Yankees lineup, spotting in his change-up.

"It was a pretty good combination for me," said Berrios, who held sluggers Juan Soto, Aaron Judge and Alex Verdugo - Nos. 2 through No. 4 in the order - without a hit.

Rodon lasted five innings, giving up eight runs on 10 hits, striking out eight and walking one. Toronto outhit New York 11-3.


With the trade whispers surrounding the Blue Jays after their recent seven-game losing streak and the July 30 trade deadline approaching, general manager Ross Atkins discussed his philosophy on Thursday.

"Ten days ago, we were feeling like there was positive momentum, and that has gone away," Atkins told reporters. “The coming days are exceptionally important to us, and understanding the market is also exceptionally important to us in either way.

"We’re focused on winning. We’re focused on building the best possible team we can this year and supporting them the best we can. If we get to a point where we need to adjust, we’ll be prepared to do so.”

Bo Bichette was asked by Sportsnet's Hazel Mae if he would be surprised if he was traded before the deadline.

"No, not surprised at all," Bichette said.


Former Toronto ace Marcus Stroman (7-3) will start for the Yankees on Friday in the second game of the four-game series . The Blue Jays will counter with left-hander Yusei Kikuchi (4-7).

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 27, 2024.