Teoscar Hernandez's three-hit night leads Blue Jays over Cleveland 7-2

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TORONTO — All-star outfielder Teoscar Hernandez belted a first-inning, two-run homer and three hits in total to bulldoze the Blue Jays to their fourth win in five games since their Rogers Centre return.

Toronto starter Hyun Jin Ryu also helped the home side with seven strong innings in his team's 7-2 victory against Cleveland on Tuesday.

Ryu (11-5) allowed two runs on seven hits for his fifth win in as many starts. He struck out eight Cleveland batters and didn't issue a walk.

The South Korean lefty avoided a scary incident in the sixth inning. Cleveland's Bobby Bradley screamed a liner back at Ryu, who managed to get his glove on the hard-hit ball. But the ball popped out for an infield hit.

Ryu shook his right hand a few times and stayed in the game. He retired the next four batters in a row, three with strikeouts.

Toronto enjoyed a 12-hit attack. Blue Jays centre fielder George Springer, named the American League player of the week on Monday, had two hits and smacked his 41st career leadoff homer to stake Toronto (55-49) to a 1-0 lead.

After shortstop Bo Bichette reached first on an infield hit, Hernandez worked Cleveland starter Zach Plesac deep into the count. He clubbed a homer to right field on the eighth pitch of his first at-bat for his 17th of the season.

Plesac (6-4) lasted five innings.

The teams traded runs in the fourth inning. Cleveland (52-52) broke Ryu's shutout bid when Bradley doubled to right field with two out, scoring Harold Ramirez.

The Blue Jays restored their three-run advantage in the bottom half of the inning. Hernandez led off with a single to left, advanced to third on a double from Lourdes Gurriel Jr., to right field and scored on Breyvic Valera's groundout to second.

Toronto opened up the game in the fifth inning with two more runs. Springer led off with a double to left-centre, advanced to third on Marcus Semien's single to centre and scored on Bichette's sacrifice fly.

Semien took second on the throw from Cleveland centre fielder Myles Straw's attempt to get Springer at the plate, and the Blue Jays second baseman scored on Hernandez's single to centre for his third RBI of the game.

With a sacrifice line out to left field, Springer knocked in Gurriel for the game's final run.

Before the game, Toronto placed infielder Cavan Biggio on the 10-day injured list with a back/neck-related ailment. In his place, outfielder Corey Dickerson was activated. He'd been out with a left foot injury since acquired in a trade with the Miami Marlins on June 29. He made his Blue Jays debut in the designated hitter's spot but went 0 for 4.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published August 3, 2021.

Tim Wharnsby, The Canadian Press

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