TORONTO — The Toronto Blue Jays continue to wait for the return of third baseman Josh Donaldson from tightness in his left calf.
He did not play in the opener of the three-game series against the Washington Nationals on Friday night Youth Russell Bodine Jersey , a 6-5 Toronto win, and he is not expected to play in the second game on Saturday at the Rogers Centre.
The Nationals (37-29) will start right-hander Max Scherzer (10-2, 2.00 ERA), and the Blue Jays (31-38) will start right-hander Marco Estrada (3-5, 4.33).
Scherzer is 4-1 with a 2.15 ERA in eight career starts against the Blue Jays.
A sixth-round draft pick by the Nationals in 2005, Estrada is 2-1 with a 4.34 ERA in six career starts against Washington.
Meanwhile, Yangervis Solarte, the player who often fills in at third for Donaldson when he is not playing shortstop or second base, did well Friday night.
Solarte hit two home runs against the Nationals — a two-run shot and a solo blast — and added a double. He became the ninth Blue Jays batter to hit home runs from each side of the plate in a game. It is the second time in his career that the switch-hitter has homered from each side of the plate in a game. He has 14 homers and 40 RBIs for the season.
By defeating Washington starter Gio Gonzalez, who allowed a season-high five runs in six-plus innings, the Blue Jays ended a streak of 11 straight losses when opposing a left-handed starter. It was the longest such streak in franchise history. Their previous long drought against left-handed starter was eight losses in a row in 1993.
Donaldson was eligible to return from the disabled list a week ago but has not played because he has been unable to run well enough during drills at the Rogers Centre on Thursday, an off-day in the schedule.
“I was here watching him (Thursday) when he was running the bases, and he still couldn’t cut it loose,” Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. “That’s all I’ve got. He’s feeling better, but he’s still a little bit hesitant.”
He has been on the DL since May 29. The Blue Jays are 6-9 in the games he has missed. He probably will need a rehabilitation assignment at Triple-A Buffalo before returning.
“I think he needs to go down and at least play a game and test it,” Gibbons said. “Game-like conditions. I think that would be smart.”
The Nationals lost first baseman Matt Adams when he took a pitch off his left index finger on a foul bunt attempt in the second inning. He finished the at-bat and struck out. He played in the field in the bottom of the second before being replaced by Mark Reynolds. The finger was swollen and will be re-evaluated Saturday.
“It’s just part of the game, stuff like this happens,” Adams said. “Come in tomorrow and get some treatment and see how it feels.”
The Nationals did have some good news from the game Friday. Daniel Murphy picked up his first hit of the season, an RBI single in the eighth. It was his third game after being sidelined following right knee surgery.
The Nationals came back Friday with two runs in the eighth after falling behind 6-3 in the seventh and had the potential tying run at third in the ninth.
“I like the way that we didn’t give up, came back, and we had a chance to tie the game at the end Youth Phillip Gaines Jersey ,” Nationals manager Dave Martinez said.
Javier Baez put on a show for the Chicago Cubs and appeared to nail his audition for a high-profile role later this summer.
Baez hit two home runs, including a grand slam, Jon Lester won his sixth consecutive start and the Cubs ended a five-game losing streak with a 9-4 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday night.
Baez homered in consecutive innings, giving him 16 on the season, and finished with four hits. He hit a solo shot off Dodgers starter Ross Stripling in the fifth inning and his bases-loaded shot in the sixth into the Dodgers’ bullpen came against reliever Edward Paredes.
And he did all of his damage in front of Dodgers manager Dave Roberts, who just happens to be the National League’s manager in the All-Star Game next month.
”I have been saying for a couple of years, the moment he stops swinging at sliders in the dirt, he becomes Manny Ramirez . and he’s getting closer,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said of Baez. ”And I think he is a better defender than Manny was . and baserunner. And Manny, I still love you.”
Baez said he was inspired to play at Dodger Stadium, but not necessarily because Roberts was watching him from the top step.
”I love it here,” Baez said. ”The (Dodgers) fans are pretty close to ours. I like playing here and I like the energy they have for their team. This is a team we will see for a long time, hopefully in the playoffs, and it is always going to be a good competition.”
Stripling gave up just one run over five innings before the Cubs broke open the game with six runs off the bullpen. Yimi Garcia (1-2) gave up three of them. The Dodgers lost for just the sixth time in 22 games in June.
”I think they’re a really good lineup,” Stripling said. ”Obviously Lester on the mound makes them good, too. I think they’re a good benchmark for us to see how we’re playing.”
It was Baez’s fourth multi-homer game and his second this season. His grand slam was the fourth of his career.
Lester (10-2) gave up two runs on four hits over five innings. It was his shortest outing by innings since April 11, when he also went five against the Pittsburgh Pirates, and his 82 pitches were his fewest since throwing 71 on opening day in Miami.
”Obviously any time you’re taken out of a game you’re not happy, (but) I respect the decision,” Lester said. ”(Maddon’s) my manager and I always stand behind him. But I’m a competitor and I want to pitch innings.”
Lester has a 1.73 ERA over his last 11 starts, going back to April 30 Youth Marshall Newhouse Jersey , and hasn’t lost since May 23. He is tied with Washington’s Max Scherzer for the NL lead in wins.
Cody Bellinger had two of the Dodgers’ four hits off Lester and now has 19 hits in his past 18 games, including seven of his 15 home runs.
The Dodgers have a major league-leading 48 home runs in June but did not hit one Tuesday.
The Cubs sent nine batters to the plate in their big sixth inning. Adison Russell and Ben Zobrist hit RBI singles in the frame to go along with Baez’s grand slam. Willson Contreras added an RBI single in the eighth inning and Albert Almora had an RBI single in the ninth.
The Dodgers’ Enrique Hernandez and Justin Turner each stole third base uncontested in the eighth inning with the Cubs’ infield overloaded on the right side in an extreme defensive shift. Hernandez and Turner both ended up scoring in the inning.
Cubs hitting coach Chili Davis held a short meeting Tuesday for the hitters and it turned into a nine-run, 15-hit night for a club starved for offense.
”I want to believe (the meeting) had something to do with it,” Maddon said. ”(Opposite-field) hits by Almora and Contreras I loved. And of course, Javy had a nice day. I’m still looking forward to, as we get more mature in the batter’s box, that we chase less. I love homers like everybody else does, but there are so many other ways to score.”
ROUGH DAY FOR PUIG
The Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig was doubled off trying to scramble back to first base in the second inning, failed to grab Ian Happ’s line drive into the gap in right-center for an error in the sixth, and twice allowed the Cubs to take an extra base on throws back to the infield.
The Dodgers came into the sixth inning with a 2-1 lead and left trailing 7-2.
”I thought the ball was a little further away and when I was trying to run it down I kind of lost it in the lights and that’s when we lost the game,” Puig said of missing Happ’s liner.
Cubs: 3B Kris Bryant (left shoulder inflammation) was placed on the 10-day DL, retroactive to June 23, but is not expected to miss more than 10 days, Maddon. … RHP Yu Darvish (right triceps tendinitis) will throw a bullpen this week before the Cubs decide if he will need another rehab start or rejoin the active roster.
Dodgers: RHP Walker Buehler (right rib microfracture) threw a full-intensity bullpen session and the Dodgers will discuss the possibility of an upcoming minor league rehab start. … INF/OF Chris Taylor (sore left hamstring) did not start but had a pinch-hit single in the fifth inning as the club is trying to avoid a DL move. … RHP Pedro Baez (right biceps tendinitis) threw a bullpen at about 70-percent effort, according to Roberts, and is expected to throw another bullpen Friday.
Cubs right-hander Kyle Hendricks (5-7, 3.73 ERA) has lost four of his last five starts. Dodgers left-hander Alex Wood (3-5, 4.13) has won his last two starts after giving up 15 combined runs over his previous three out