By IAN HARRISON Associated Press
TORONTO (AP) — Ramón Laureano homered and had three RBIs, Tanner Bibee pitched six innings to win for the third time in four starts and the Cleveland Guardians beat the Toronto Blue Jays 5-2 Friday night.
Andrés Giménez and Bo Naylor hit solo home runs as Cleveland rebounded after losing its past two.
Bibee (10-3) allowed two runs and six hits, including two home runs. The rookie walked one and struck out five.
“He has that ability to kind of get another gear, which is really fun to watch,” Guardians manager Terry Francona said.
Enyel De Los Santos and Trevor Stephan each worked one inning. Emmanuel Clase finished for his 34th save in 43 chances.
Laureano wasn’t in Cleveland’s original starting lineup but got the call when Will Brennan was scratched because of a strained right knee.
“He ended up being huge in the middle of our order,” Francona said of Laureano.
George Springer and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. both hit solo home runs for the Blue Jays but Toronto lost its third straight. Guerrero’s homer was his first since Aug. 4 at Boston.
The slumping Blue Jays have scored five total runs over the past three games.
Springer opened the scoring with a leadoff homer in the second, his 16th, but Cleveland tied it on Naylor’s one-out drive off Chris Bassitt (12-7) in the third. The homer was Naylor’s fifth.
Playing in front of a large group of friends and family, Naylor became the 16th Canadian-born player to hit a home run in Toronto.
“All the things working up to this moment has made it super special, having the people I love dearest closest to me here,” Naylor said. “And to add a win on top of that, it’s a great night.”
Brother and Guardians teammate Josh also homered north of the border last season. The Naylors are from Mississauga, just west of Toronto.
Toronto challenged after plate umpire Adrian Johnson called Cleveland’s Steven Kwan safe on a two-out double by Oscar Gonzalez in the third. The call was overturned when replays showed Kwan’s hand missed the plate as he slid by.
“It was a good slide to evade the tag, he just evaded the plate, too,” Francona said. “If he gets closer, he’s probably out.”
Laureano made sure there was nothing to challenge with a two-out, two-run homer in the fourth, his seventh.
The Blue Jays couldn’t deliver on an opportunity to cut the deficit in the bottom half, when Guerrero was thrown out at the plate as he tried to score from first on Matt Chapman’s double to left. Shortstop Gabriel Arias made the relay throw to Cleveland catcher Naylor, who tagged Guerrero to end the inning.
Gonzalez doubled to begin the sixth and scored on Laureano’s one-out double, but Guerrero replied with a one-out homer in the sixth, his 19th.
Giménez made it 5-2 with a two-out homer off Jordan Hicks in the eighth, his 12th.
Bassitt allowed four runs and seven hits in 5 2/3 innings. The right-hander lost for the first time since July 31 against Baltimore.
“I felt fine,” Bassitt said. “I just pitched terrible.”
Guardians: Brennan injured his knee when he collided with the fence while making a catch Thursday. Brennan was in the original lineup at DH with Oscar Gonzalez in right field. Laureano started in right and Gonzalez was the DH.
Blue Jays: RHP Chad Green (elbow surgery) is expected to pitch in back-to-back games at Triple-A Buffalo on Saturday and Sunday, likely his final hurdle before joining Toronto’s roster.
Clase has 101 career saves, 100 of them with Cleveland. He got his first save with Texas in 2019.
BEAST FOR THE EAST
Bibee is 4-0 with a 2.08 ERA in five starts against AL East opponents
Cleveland recalled RHP Cody Morris from Triple-A Columbus. RHP Hunter Gaddis and LHP Tim Herrin were optioned to Triple-A.
LHP Hyun Jin Ryu (2-1, 1.89 ERA) was set to start for Toronto against LHP Logan Allen (6-6, 3.31).