Joseph homers in fourth straight game, O's edge Blue Jays
Toronto, ON (SportsNetwork.com) - Caleb Joseph homered in his fourth straight game, Miguel Gonzalez tossed six solid innings and the Baltimore Orioles beat the Toronto Blue Jays, 2-1, in the rubber match of a key three-game series.
Gonzalez (6-6) gave up one run on four hits with four strikeouts and two walks. Andrew Miller, Darren O'Day and Zach Britton each tossed a scoreless inning out of the bullpen.
The Orioles have won four of five and hold a five-game lead over Toronto and New York for first place in the AL East.
"These are big games," said Joseph. "[Toronto is] right behind us, and when you play head to head games, the lead swings really quick. They're a good team and they're gonna be right on our tails for pretty much the whole year. They do a lot of things right, and we knew we had to come in here and take care of business."
Anthony Gose homered for the Blue Jays, who have dropped five of six. J.A. Happ (8-6) took the hard-luck loss after allowing five hits, including the two-run blast to Joseph in the fourth inning. He had a career-high 12 strikeouts over eight innings.
"Our lineup is what it is right now," said Blue Jays manager John Gibbons. "Some nights you're going to get that big hit, some nights you're not."
Toronto's Melky Cabrera left in the third, two innings after he was hit on the right elbow by a pitch from Gonzalez. Nolan Reimold took over for Cabrera, who had started as the designated hitter. X-rays were negative, and Cabrera is considered day-to-day.
After getting the day off on Wednesday, Joseph hit a two-run homer in the fourth. His blast over the wall in left tied a club record for most consecutive games with a home run by a catcher, previously done by Ramon Hernandez (2006) and Gus Triandos (1959).
The Blue Jays got within one on Gose's homer in the fifth.
Toronto failed to advanced a runner past first the rest of the way.
The Orioles lead the season series by a 7-6 margin ... Gonzalez improved to 5-2 lifetime against the Blue Jays ... Prior to Thursday's game, Toronto placed third baseman Brett Lawrie on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left oblique. The Blue Jays recalled pitcher Rob Rasmussen from Triple-A Buffalo to fill the roster spot.
08/08 02:15:11 ET