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Justin Turner goes 3 for 4, drives in three runs as Blue Jays shut out Rockies 5-0

TORONTO — Justin Turner went 3 for 4, driving in three runs as the Toronto Blue Jays shut out the Colorado Rockies 5-0 on Sunday.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. added an RBI single in the third inning as Toronto (8-8) won back-to-back games. Isiah Kinfer-Falefa drove in another run with a base hit of his own in the eighth.

Jose Berrios (3-0) struck out seven over seven scoreless innings of two-hit ball.

Genesis Cabrera and Nate Pearson preserved Berrios's win with two scoreless innings of relief.

Kyle Freeland (0-3) gave up four runs on seven hits over five innings as Colorado (4-12) lost the rubber game of the three-game set at Rogers Centre.

Victor Vodnik, Jalen Beeks and Anthony Molina came out of the Rockies' bullpen, with the latter giving up a run.

Turner opened the scoring in the first when he poked a single to shallow right field to score George Springer from second. The inning ended when Turner tried to steal second during the next at bat and was gunned down by Rockies catcher Jacob Stallings.

Guerrero tacked on a run in the third when his hit dropped into centre field, scoring Kevin Kiermaier from third base for a 2-0 Blue Jays' lead. Kiermaier had reached base on a single, moved to second on a throwing error by Freeland on an attempted pickoff, and then advanced to third on Springer's sacrifice fly.

Turner struck again two hitters later with a double that scored Guerrero.

It was the designated hitter's seventh RBI for Toronto. Turner signed a US$13-million, one-year deal with the Blue Jays on Jan. 30, effectively replacing Brandon Belt as the team's DH.

Turner cashed in Springer again in the fifth inning, with his third hit on the day dropping into shallow centre field. Turner's batting average rose to .386 and his OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage) was at 1.095.

Toronto pieced together another rally in the eighth inning, with Ernie Clement, Alejandro Kirk and Kiner-Falefa hitting three singles in a row. Kiner-Falefa's two-out hit brought Clement home for a 5-0 lead.

Pearson came on in the ninth, striking out Elias Diaz, Nolan Jones and Brenton Doyle to finish the game.

ON DECK — Chris Bassitt (1-2) gets the start on Monday as Toronto hosts the New York Yankees in the opener of a three-game series.

Carlos Rodón (1-0) will take the mound for New York.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 14, 2024.

John Chidley-Hill, The Canadian Press