J.P. Arencibia had seen enough of pitcher Ricky Romero losing.The Blue Jays catcher hit a grand slam and went 3-for-3 with five RBI in Game 2 of Toronto’s double header with the Baltimore Orioles, pacing his team to a 9-5 victory that ended Romero’s 13-game losing streak.
Romero’s losing stretch gives him the dubious distinction of being tied for longest drought in club history with Tom Underwood (1978-79).
Toronto (67-86) had lost the earlier game 4-1 to extend its losing streak to a season-high seven games – all of them coming on the road against AL East foes New York, Tampa Bay and Baltimore (88-66).
In the night cap Arencibia iced the game in the seventh with a two-out grand slam after the Jays had loaded the bases with no outs.
Arencibia heroics were preceded left fielder Anthony Gose throwing out Taylor Teagarden on a sacrifice fly to end the sixth inning and maintain the Jays’ 5-4 lead. Gose’s play kept Romero in line for the victory.
Romero (9-14) went five innings, allowing four earned runs and four walks en route to his first victory since June 22.
The Jays wasted little time giving run support to their struggling ace, something they have failed to do recently, scoring only 24 runs during his losing streak.
After Brett Lawrie walked to lead-off the game Edwin Encarnacion homered two batters later for his 41st long ball of the season and a 2-0 Blue Jays lead.
They added to the lead in the second as both Arencibia and Gose picked up RBI’s, puttng the Blue Birds ahead by four runs.
Baltimore, 1 1/2 games back of AL East-leading New York, responded with two runs in the bottom half of the inning.
Nate McClouth’s solo shot in the fifth brought the Orioles to within one.
Moises Sierra was the first batter to the plate in the sixth and hit a home run to restore a two-run lead but the home team responded with a run in the latter half of the inning and had the bases loaded when Gose threw out Teagarden.
Henderson Alvarez (9-14) took the loss in the day game for Toronto, pitching 6 2/3 innings and giving up eight hits, three walks and four earned runs.
Right-hander Steve Johnson (4-0) picked up the win with five scoreless innings in his first start in nearly a month.
The two teams hook up again Tuesday night (7:05 p.m. ET) as Toronto sends Aaron Laffey (3-6, 4.80) to the mound against Joe Saunders (8-12, 4.08).