The Toronto Blue Jays will try to end a stretch of four consecutive series losses Tuesday night when they start right-hander Jose Berrios against the visiting Seattle Mariners.
Berrios (2-2, 5.82 ERA) will be going for his first win of the month when he faces Mariners right-hander Logan Gilbert (4-1, 2.13).
The Blue Jays won the opener of the three-game series 6-2 on Monday night behind six scoreless innings from Yusei Kikuchi, a former Mariner, and solo home runs by Bo Bichette and Matt Chapman.
Kikuchi, who left the Mariners to sign with the Blue Jays as a free agent in the offseason, allowed one hit and three walks while striking out six.
“We’ve seen Yusei a lot, and he got good results,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said postgame. “He was an All-Star last year. He’s a good pitcher. He’s got good stuff. He had a good night tonight. He threw strikes when he needed to throw strikes.
“He’s got good stuff. There’s never been a question with that. We just couldn’t get much pressure or get much going against him.”
Berrios is 0-2 with a 9.90 ERA in two starts in May, giving up 11 earned runs on 13 hits in 10 innings. His last win came on April 30 against the Houston Astros.
Berrios faced Seattle once last season when he was with the Minnesota Twins. He allowed two runs and five hits in 5 2/3 innings to earn the win. In six career starts against Seattle, he is 2-2 with a 3.89 ERA.
Three of Toronto’s run of series losses came on a 2-7 road trip that ended Sunday with a 3-0 defeat against the Tampa Bay Rays.
The Mariners are 2-2 to open their 10-game road trip. They won two of three from the New York Mets to earn their first road series win of the season. They finish the trip with four games against the Boston Red Sox.
Gilbert has made one career start against Toronto, when he allowed five runs and eight hits in four innings to post a loss on Aug. 15.
Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo changed his struggling lineup for the last two games against the Rays, with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. batting second, Teoscar Hernandez third and Bichette fourth. He returned Bichette to second, Guerrero to third and Hernandez to fourth on Monday.
“At the end of the day, when it comes right down to it, and I’ve said this before, it’s about someone getting hot,” Montoyo said. “It doesn’t matter where you put people … as long as someone gets hot and it spreads and takes pressure off other people.”
Bichette had three hits and two RBIs on Monday. Guerrero extended his quiet hitting streak to 13 games with a single on Monday. During that span, he is 14-for-48 (.292) with two doubles, one homer and four RBIs.
Seattle’s Eugenio Suarez hit his team-leading seventh home run in the seventh inning Monday. It was the 200th homer of his career.
Toronto put left-handed reliever Tim Mayza (left forearm inflammation) on the injured list Monday and recalled left-hander Andrew Vasquez from Triple-A Buffalo. Toronto also reinstated Cavan Biggio from the COVID-related injured list and optioned him to Buffalo.
Blue Jays closer Jordan Romano was not available to pitch Monday because of what Montoyo termed a non-COVID illness.
Seattle placed right-handed reliever Drew Steckenrider on the restricted list and purchased the contract of left-hander Roenis Elias from Triple-A Tacoma.
Mariners left-hander Robbie Ray, who won the American League Cy Young Award with the Blue Jays last season, did not make the trip to Toronto, either.
–Field Level Media