Yu Darvish paid a high price for making one bad pitch to Toronto’s top hitter.
Edwin Encarnacion hit his 31st home run, J.A. Happ won his second straight start and the Toronto Blue Jays beat Darvish and the Rangers 3-2 on Friday night, handing Texas their fourth loss in five games.
“He was good,” Rangers manager Ron Washington said of Darvish. “We just didn’t support him with runs.”
Darvish (12-9) lost for the second time in three starts, allowing three runs and three hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out 10.
“From the beginning, I don’t think my fastball had a lot of life to it, but more often than not, I was able to keep the ball down with my cutter, slider, all my other pitches,” Darvish said through a translator. “Overall, I think I was able to stay down and be effective.”
For Darvish, it was the seventh time this season he has reached double figures in strikeouts, tying him with Jim Bibby (1973) for the Rangers rookie mark.
Darvish failed to win consecutive starts for the first time since a three-game winning streak in June, but allowed three earned runs for the second straight start after giving up 18 runs in his previous three outings.
Encarnacion, who became the first major leaguer to homer off Darvish when he took him deep in an April 30 Texas win at Rogers Centre, did it again with a second deck blast in the first, his 31st.
Rangers catcher Geovany Soto said location was to blame on Encarnacion’s homer, with Darvish leaving a pitch up in the zone.
“Only one [bad] pitch to a guy that’s having an unbelievable season,” Soto said. “It was just that one pitch, too. After that he had a really impressive outing. He was pounding the zone with his fastball and he was accurate.”
YANKEES 6, RED SOX 4
New York’s Derek Jeter hit his 250th career home run, while Nick Swisher homered twice as the Yankees beat the Boston Red Sox 6-4 in Friday’s clash between the American League rivals.
New York hit four solo homers off Franklin Morales (3-4), and Swisher added another solo shot in the seventh.
Jeter’s homer gave the Yankees 10 players with 10 or more this season, tying the club record set in 1998.
New York starter Phil Hughes (12-10) survived his own throwing error in a rainy third inning that led to four unearned runs and had put the Red Sox ahead 4-3.
TIGERS 5, ORIOLES 3
In Detroit, Michigan, Prince Fielder hit a pair of two-run homers to lift Detroit to victory over Baltimore.
Fielder tied it 3-3 with a homer in the sixth. He then hit a soaring shot in the eighth to put the Tigers in front.
Detroit reliever Joaquin Benoit (2-3) pitched a perfect eighth inning for the win.
Darren O’Day (6-1) took the loss.
RAYS 12, ANGELS 3
In Anaheim, B.J. Upton went four for five with a home run and three RBIs, while Ben Zobrist and Jose Molina also homered as Tampa Bay dominated Los Angeles.
The Rays maintained a one-game lead over Detroit and Baltimore in the AL wild-card race.
Angels starter Jered Weaver (15-3) conceded a career-worst nine earned runs. He had his shortest outing of the season, giving up eight hits in three-plus inning.
Tampa Bay starter James Shields (11-7) allowed seven hits and no walks in six innings, while striking out eight.
ROYALS 4, WHITE SOX 2
In Kansas City, Missouri, Salvador Perez hit a tiebreaking two-run double in the seventh inning and Kansas City held on to beat Chicago.