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05.11.2018 08:03
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TORONTO — Jose Bautista will return to the scene of some of his biggest moments in baseball Tuesday night when the New York Mets visit the Toronto Blue Jays.

The Mets and Blue Jays will play a two-game interleague series at the Rogers Centre Authentic Kyzir White Jersey , where Bautista starred for the better part of nine years.

The Mets will start right-hander Zack Wheeler (2-6, 4.47 ERA) against Blue Jays right-hander Marco Estrada (4-7, 4.53) in the series opener.

While the Blue Jays (39-45) were losing 3-2 in 10 innings on Monday afternoon to the Detroit Tigers at the Rogers Centre, the Mets (33-48) had the day off. It gave Bautista a chance to renew acquaintances in Toronto.

“I have some stuff scheduled, to meet up with people who were part of my life when I was there and visit some of the usual spots,” Bautista told reporters in Miami, where the Mets played last weekend. “It’s definitely a place that I hold dear and close to my heart. It’s going to be a fun time.”

Bautista twice led the American League in home runs with the Blue Jays, hitting 54 in 2010 and 43 in 2011. His most famous home run came in 2015 at the Rogers Centre, a three-run blast with an iconic bat flip that won the American League Division Series in the fifth and deciding game against the Texas Rangers.

He played 1,235 regular-season games for the Blue Jays from 2008 to 2017, hitting 288 homers (second only to Carlos Delgado’s 336) with 776 RBIs (third on the team’s career list).

Bautista also had an influence on his teammates.

“He was a huge help in my development,” Blue Jays center fielder Kevin Pillar said. “There was a time in my first full year when I went from left to center and I was making some plays and I kind of earned his respect and he metaphorically gave me the keys (to the outfield) and told me to go get anything I could. And my voice became the voice in the outfield. That was pretty special to me.”

When the Blue Jays did not pick up the option on his contract for this season, he became a free agent. He did not have a team until the Atlanta Braves signed him on April 18. After a minor-league stint, he struggled with the Braves for 12 games and was released May 20. The Mets signed him May 22.

In 36 games with the Mets, the 37-year-old is batting .250/.418/476 with three homers and 13 RBIs. In his past 14 games, he is hitting .300/.462/.650 with three homers and 10 RBIs.

“I’m not surprised by what he’s doing,” Mets manager Mickey Callaway said. “He probably just needed some at-bats to get going and now we’re seeing the byproduct of him being ready. I’ve always known he’s a really good hitter. He keeps himself in really good shape. He’s probably in the best shape of anybody on our team and is (the oldest player on the team). Great approach, great patience, still has bat speed.”

“Not having a spring training, wanting to swing the bat and some other things might’ve played into me not (reaching base) as much in Atlanta Authentic Kalen Ballage Jersey ,” Bautista said.

Bautista always has been a versatile player. He played mostly right field with the Blue Jays but also manned third base and occasionally first base. He has played 12 games in left field for the Mets, 10 in right field, two at third base and one at second base.

This will be the second series between the teams. They split two games on May 15-16 at Citi Field.

Wheeler was the losing pitcher on May 16, a 12-1 Blue Jays victory, in his only career outing against Toronto. He allowed six runs, seven hits and three walks and struck out seven in four innings.

Estrada is 0-2 with a 7.27 ERA in seven career games (two starts) against the Mets. He struggled earlier in the season but is 2-1 with a 2.35 ERA in his past five starts.

With the bases loaded and the game tied in the 10th inning, Brad Miller plotted his approach as he came to the plate.

”You just look like you’re going to swing and don’t swing,” Miller said.

Miller drew a bases-loaded walk with one out and the NL Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers rallied past the Minnesota Twins, 6-5 on Monday night.

Nate Orf, playing in his first major league game, was hit by a pitch from Zack Littell (0-2) leading off the 10th. Manny Pina followed with a single and Keon Broxton walked.

Pinch-hitter Hernan Perez, hitting against five infielders, hit a grounder to the left side that shortstop Jorge Polanco fielded and fired to the plate to force Orf before Miller got his chance against Littell.

”It’s tough right now,” Littell said, trying to explain his lack of command in the 10th.

Corey Knebel (2-0) pitched a scoreless 10th with a pair of strikeouts for the Brewers, who trailed 5-1 after Robbie Grossman blasted his first career grand slam with two outs in the fifth off Milwaukee starter Brent Suter.

Milwaukee has allowed grand slams in three consecutive games.

Four Brewers relievers combined on five shutout innings.

”Corey had a dynamite inning,” Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said. ”It was an outing for the bullpen. They kept us alive in that game.”

The Brewers rallied against Twins closer Fernando Rodney in the ninth to tie it. After retiring pinch-hitter Eric Sogard, Rodney gave up three consecutive singles to load the bases for Travis Shaw, who tied it with a sacrifice fly. Rodney blew his fifth save opportunity this season.

The Twins tied it at 1 in the third on a one-out RBI groundout by Brian Dozier, one pitch after Dozier appeared to have struck out swinging. Plate umpire Doug Eddings ruled that Dozier had fouled off the pitch Authentic Durham Smythe Jersey , a call argued by Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell.

Suter gave up five runs and nine hits in five innings.

Pina led off the Brewers’ fifth with a homer off Kyle Gibson to cut the Twins’ lead to three. Milwaukee added another run on Miller’s bloop single and pulled to 5-4 when Twins third baseman Willians Astudillo failed to cleanly field Ryan Braun’s grounder near the bag.

Gibson gave up eight hits and three earned runs over five innings.

ORF’S LONG JOURNEY

The undrafted Orf, 28, started at second base. He has been one of the top-producing players in the Brewers’ farm system for many years and fans have long been clamoring for him to be called up, even launching a (hash)FreeNateOrf campaign on Twitter.

”He is one of the more respected and revered players in our organization because of the way he treats people and because of the way he goes about his business,” Brewers general manager David Stearns said.

Orf, whose parents traveled from St. Louis for the game, narrowly missed hitting a grand slam in the fifth but Max Kepler hauled in the deep drive at the center-field wall.

”After I hit it, I was like this is it. This is the coolest thing I’ve ever done,” Orf said. ”Then he caught it.”

HITTING HURLERS

Gibson, who had singles in his first two at-bats, entered the game with just a pair of career hits in 16 at-bats. His single leading off the third was his first hit since June 2015.

”I’d rather go 0 for 5 and go eight innings,” Gibson said.

Suter singled in his only at-bat and Milwaukee reliever Taylor Williams got his first career hit with a sixth-inning single.

TRAINER’S ROOM:

Twins: Reinstated SS Jorge Polanco following an 80-game suspension for testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug. To make room for Polanco, OF Ryan LaMarre was designated for release or assignment. … Recalled RHP Zack Littell from Triple-A Rochester and sent LHP Adalberto Mejia to Rochester.

Brewers: OF Christian Yelich sat out for the fourth consecutive time since leaving Thursday’s game with lower back tightness. ..RHP Aaron Wilkerson was optioned to Triple-A Colorado Springs when Orf was recalled. …Transferred INF/OF Nick Franklin, who has been out since May with a quadriceps injury, to the 60-day disabled list.

UP NEXT

Twins: Jake Odorizzi (3-5, 4.62 ERA) allowed one run and five hits with 10 strikeouts in a May 20 start against the Brewers but didn’t factor into the decision.

Brewers: Junior Guerra (4-5, 3.05) surrendered one run and four hits in 4 1/3 innings and received no decision in a 3-1 loss to the Twins in Minneapolis on May 20.

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