Blue Jays pick up Hutchison with power surge

As starter struggles, lineup scores 9 on 3 homers to top Twins

Blue Jays pick up Hutchison with power surge

TORONTO -- As they've done so many times before, the Blue Jays bashed their way to victory.

The home team muscled up for three home runs -- including a grand slam from Jose Bautista -- en route to a 9-7 win over the Twins on Wednesday night at Rogers Centre.

On a night when starting pitcher Drew Hutchison didn't have his best stuff, surrendering three runs in the first and seven total (four unearned) on seven hits over five innings, the bats were there to bail him out.

Josh Donaldson kept his hot streak alive, homering for the third game in a row to cut into an early 3-0 deficit before Bautista sent the Blue Jays ahead with his slam in the second. Edwin Encarnacion put the nail in the coffin with his three-run shot in the fourth.

Must C: Encarnacion launches one

Needless to say, Toronto's working with plenty of power.

"We do have that kind of offense, especially in this ballpark," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "We got the big home run of course [from Donaldson], Jose gets the grand slam to put us up. It doesn't happen every night, but we have the ability to do that. We've done it a number of times this year."

Donaldson's dinger gave him 29 on the season to match a career high while extending his hitting streak vs. the Twins to 23 games, the longest active streak in the Majors by any player against one team.

Donaldson's two-run blast

Bautista's blast, the fifth grand slam of his career, brought the Blue Jays their 10th multihomer effort since the All-Star break and their 38th inning of at least four runs this season.

And Encarnacion's eclipsing shot, projected to land 462 feet from home plate, according to Statcast™, gave the veteran slugger 20 on the season, making him one of six Blue Jays in club history to hit at least 20 homers in five different seasons.

Bautista said the Blue Jays were able to capitalize on some mistakes made by rookie right-hander Tyler Duffey, who made his Major League debut.

"He was using all four pitches, but he was missing the zone and falling behind and let a couple of guys get on base and he had to eventually come back in the zone. We made him pay for it," he said.

Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.