Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Ryan Borucki will remember everything about his first major-league victory at home except for the pitching line.
Borucki pitched five innings and allowed four earned runs, nine hits, and three walks as the Blue Jays defeated the Boston Red Sox 8-5 on Thursday. He made his second appearance this season against the best team in baseball and his teammates provided run support.
“Anytime you can grind and help your team get a win, especially against Boston, it’s definitely uplifting a little bit,” said Borucki (2-2). “I definitely feel good about this one because I helped keep us in the game and helped us get a victory.”
Randal Grichuk drove in three runs including a two-run homer for the Blue Jays (52-62). Teoscar Hernandez hit a solo home run and Justin Smoak drove in a pair of runs.
Mookie Betts hit for the cycle for the Red Sox (81-34), who lost for the first time in August. Betts hit a single in the first inning, a triple in the second, a double in the fourth and a home run in the ninth.
“I don’t know if you can [stop Betts from hitting], especially because he’s hot,” Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said of Betts. “He’ll take his walks, too. I mentioned to [Toronto pitching coach] Pete Walker on the bench that you kind of have to hope he just hits it at somebody.”
J.D. Martinez hit his major-league leading 35th home run of the season.
Rick Porcello (14-5) lasted just four innings while giving up seven earned runs and six hits. He walked three batters and recorded five strikeouts.
Eduardo Nunez helped the Red Sox open the scoring in the first inning. He hit a two-run single to give Boston a 2-0 lead. The Blue Jays tied it later in the inning. Smoak hit an RBI single to cut the lead.
Smoak’s hit extended his hitting streak to a season team-high 13 games.
“I’m trying to be competitive and have good at-bats,” Smoak said of his streak. “The last few weeks have just felt pretty good.”
Grichuk followed with an RBI fielder’s choice to tie it 2-2.
In the second, Kevin Pillar grounded into a fielder’s choice, which allowed Russell Martin to cross home plate and gave Toronto a 3-2 lead.
The Blue Jays added to their lead in the third. Hernandez hit a solo home run to right field to give Toronto a 4-2 lead.
In the fifth, Boston’s Martinez hit a solo homer to cut Toronto’s lead to 4-3. Brock Holt followed that with an RBI single to tie the game 4-4.
Smoak hit an RBI in the bottom of the inning to give Toronto a 5-4 advantage. Grichuk then hit a two-run home run to cap a three-run inning and gave the Blue Jays a 7-4 lead.
Toronto added to their lead in the sixth. Devon Travis would hit an RBI single to give the Blue Jays a four-run cushion.
In the ninth inning, Betts hit a solo home run to complete his first career cycle to cut Toronto’s lead.
“It’s a good day but a tough loss,” Betts said. “It sucks that I did it in a loss but turn the page and get ready for tomorrow.