Bloody Big Deal: Blue Jays’ Guerrero Jr. belts three homers despite gash on hand
NEW YORK — Vladimir Guerrero Jr. shook off a bloody gash on his right ring finger to hit three home runs against the rival Yankees, including two off ace Gerrit Cole, and the Toronto Blue Jays beat New York 6-4 Wednesday night.
George Springer hit a tiebreaking single in the seventh, and Toronto held off the Yankees despite homers from Anthony Rizzo, Aaron Judge and Gleyber Torres — and a fly in the eighth by pinch-hitter Giancarlo Stanton that was caught on the warning track.
Guerrero had a big hand in that.
The AL MVP runner-up homered off Cole in the first inning, had his hand accidentally spiked on a play at first base in the second, then hammered a line-drive, two-run shot against Cole in the third to put Toronto up 3-0.
He doubled off Cole in the sixth — prompting the pitcher to make a show of tipping his cap to the 23-year-old — then launched a 443-foot leadoff homer against Jonathan Loaisiga in the eighth for a 5-3 lead.
It was the second three-homer game of Guerrero’s career, matching a career high set last April 27 against Washington. He was on deck when teammate Bo Bichette made the final out in the top of the ninth, leaving him without a shot at matching the big league record of four homers in a game.
Guerrero leads the majors with four homers in six games after topping the bigs with 48 last season.
Jordan Romano pitched the ninth for his fourth save of the season. He’s converted 27 straight chances.
Even he got a hand from Guerrero — the left one, which gloved a sharp liner from Josh Donaldson for the final out.
Blue Jays outfielder Teoscar Hernández left the field in pain after a groundout in the sixth and was removed from the game with left side discomfort. He was headed for an MRI afterward.
Guerrero seemed like he’d have to leave in the second inning when his bare throwing hand was stepped on by baserunner Aaron Hicks. Guerrero had to reach across his body for Bichette’s throw and placed his right hand down behind the first base bag to balance. Hicks stomped on it running out an infield single.
The fourth-year big leaguer immediately began waving the hand around, then walked toward Toronto’s dugout as blood dripped onto his uniform and the turf. In a show of toughness sure to satisfy hockey-mad fans back in Toronto, Guerrero had a trainer tape up his wound and jogged back to first base a couple minutes later.
With a bloody stain on the right thigh of his pants, he batted again in the top of the third and turned Cole’s 98 mph fastball into a 427-foot, two-run homer and a 3-0 Blue Jays lead.
New York erased that deficit with homers by Rizzo and Judge and a tying double from DJ LeMahieu against José Berríos in the sixth. Springer responded in the seventh with an RBI single against Loaisiga.
Guerrero’s first homer was nearly robbed in center by Hicks, who leaped above the wall and briefly had the ball in his glove. It fell out when Hicks hit the wall, bounced off something beyond the home-run barrier and fell back into play. A replay review confirmed the ball went out.
Rizzo has three homers in six games. Judge and Torres each hit their first. Stanton’s drive in the eighth would’ve tied it, but left fielder Raimel Tapia caught it with his back against the wall.
Cole struck out six in 5 2/3 innings, giving up three runs on Guerrero’s homers. Three of the four hits against him were by Guerrero.
Adam Cimber (1-1) pitched a scoreless inning for the win. Chad Green (0-1) walked Alejandro Kirk, and pinch-runner Cavan Biggio scored on Springer’s single.
Yankees left fielder Joey Gallo was presented with his second Gold Glove before the game.
Blue Jays: Manager Charlie Montoyo says Toronto may shift to a six-man rotation. RHP Ross Stripling could be plugged in to start Friday against Oakland.
Yankees: LHP Jordan Montgomery is expected to pitch as scheduled Friday at Baltimore despite taking a 103 mph comebacker off his left knee.
Yankees RHP Luis Severino (0-0, 6.00) makes his second start Thursday after pitching three innings of two-run ball against Boston. He’ll face Toronto RHP Kevin Gausman (0-0, 5.40), who is making his second start for the Blue Jays since signing a $110 million, five-year deal to leave San Francisco.