The Canadian Press
TORONTO–Blue Jays’ left-hander Ryan Borucki delivered another strong outing in just the second major-league start of his career.
But for a second-straight time, he came up short of a win.
Borucki struck out eight batters and allowed just two runs over seven innings of work in his home debut yesterday afternoon but the effort was spoiled by a 3-2 loss in 10 innings to the Detroit Tigers.
The 24-year-old Borucki made his major-league debut last week, allowing two runs over six innings in a loss to the defending champion Astros in Houston.
Manager John Gibbons said he was impressed with both starts.
“Down in Houston he got into some jams and came through . . . today they started rolling out some hits and then he just kicked it in against a team that can hit left-handed pitching,” Gibbons noted.
“It says a lot, he looked like he was in control, didn’t ever panic,” Gibbons added.
“Another impressive outing for Borucki.”
Jose Iglesias drove in Niko Goodrum for the winning run in the 10th inning.
Goodrum hit a one-out triple off Jays’ reliever Seunghwan Oh (4-3), then Iglesias followed with a sacrifice fly to right field to put the Tigers ahead.
Oh was thrust into relief for the third time in the last four games.
“Those guys are never going to be perfect, you wish they were,” Gibbons said.
“[Oh’s] been pitching really well,” he added. “They just hit it in the right spot.”
Blaine Hardy recorded three outs in the bottom of the 10th for the save.
Hardy replaced reliever Buck Farmer after a lead-off single from Lourdes Gurriel Jr.
Detroit starter Mike Fiers allowed just one run and three hits while striking out five batters over eight innings of work.
“It was a great performance,” Tigers’ manager Ron Gardenhire said of his starter.
The Tigers (38-48) salvaged a split of the four-game series after dropping the first two games to the Jays (39-45) on Friday and Saturday.
Sunday’s win snapped a season-high 11-game slide for Detroit.
“That losing streak was a little bit tough on this clubhouse,” Hardy conceded.
“Now that we have two wins in a row, I think we’re back to where we need to be.”
Borucki’s eight strikeouts tied Roy Halladay for the second most by a Jays’ pitcher in their home debut.
Jose Nunez holds the record with 11.
But Borucki said he models his game after another former Toronto starter: Mark Buehrle.
“He works fast, just attacks the zone with all his pitches,” noted Borucki, a native of Mundelein, Ill., north of Chicago where Buehrle spent most of his career.
“I got to watch him a lot growing up as a White Sox fan so I did take a lot of parts of his game and put them into mine.”
The Tigers opened the scoring in the first inning, hitting four-straight one-out singles.
The last one–an RBI for Victor Martinez–gave Detroit a 1-0 lead.
“They just kind of ambushed me and saw the outside part of the plate,” Borucki said.
“Me and Luke [Maile] made a decision to start working inside a little more and then after that, they had to respect the inside part of the plate.”
Borucki retired 13-consecutive batters after Martinez’s RBI.
Teoscar Hernandez drove in Curtis Granderson with a ground-out to tie the game 1-1 in the fifth inning, but Detroit reclaimed the lead in the sixth on a fielder’s choice that allowed Nicholas Castellanos to score.
Toronto tied the game again in the ninth on a bases-loaded walk from Justin Smoak.
Cleveland dumped Kansas City 9-3 in the only other game in the AL yesterday.
Over in the NL, Colorado beat San Francisco 5-2, St. Louis doubled Arizona 6-3, and L.A. routed Pittsburgh 17-1.
Milwaukee topped Minnesota 6-5 (10 innings), Atlanta beat the N.Y. Yankees 5-3 (11 innings), Boston edged Washington 4-3, Cincinnati downed the Chicago White Sox 5-3, and Miami nipped Tampa Bay 3-2 (10 innings).