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Jays rally from 7 down for season-opening win over Rangers

April 9, 2022 GMT
Toronto Blue Jays left fielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and fans celebrate his catch against the Texas Rangers' Mitch Garver during the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 8, 2022, in Toronto. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)
Toronto Blue Jays left fielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and fans celebrate his catch against the Texas Rangers' Mitch Garver during the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 8, 2022, in Toronto. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)
Toronto Blue Jays left fielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and fans celebrate his catch against the Texas Rangers' Mitch Garver during the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 8, 2022, in Toronto. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)
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Toronto Blue Jays left fielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and fans celebrate his catch against the Texas Rangers' Mitch Garver during the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 8, 2022, in Toronto. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)
1 of 2
Toronto Blue Jays left fielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and fans celebrate his catch against the Texas Rangers' Mitch Garver during the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, April 8, 2022, in Toronto. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press via AP)

TORONTO (AP) — Lourdes Gurriel Jr. doubled in the go-ahead run in the seventh inning and the Toronto Blue Jays erased a seven-run deficit and completed the biggest opening day comeback in seven decades to beat the Texas Rangers 10-8 Friday night.

A capacity crowd of 45,022 packed in to see Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and the upstart Jays for the first time since before the pandemic. They erupted when a video review ruled Teoscar Hernández beat catcher Mitch Garver’s tag at the plate on Gurriel’s double, putting Toronto ahead 9-8 after trailing 7-0.

The last team to win its first game after trailing by at least seven runs was the 1950 New York Yankees, who trailed 9-0 then beat Boston 15-10 at Fenway Park, per the Elias Sports Bureau.

The only other team to overcome a seven-run deficit in its season-opening game was the 1901 Detroit Tigers, who erased a 10-run gap to beat the Milwaukee Brewers 14-13.

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Blue Jays right-hander Adam Cimber (1-0) pitched one inning for the win despite allowing Adolis García’s tying home run in the seventh. Yimi Garcia worked the eighth and Jordan Romano finished for his first save.

Gurriel’s winning hit came off Rangers right-hander Dennis Santana (0-1), who allowed one run in 1 1/3 innings.

YANKEES 6, RED SOX 5, 11 innings

NEW YORK (AP) — Josh Donaldson capped his Yankees debut with an RBI single in the 11th inning, lifting New York over Boston for its first walk-off win on opening day since Yogi Berra scored in 1957.

Trailing 3-0 before ace Gerrit Cole got a single out, the Yankees rallied against their longtime rival.

Xander Bogaerts put the Red Sox ahead 5-4 in the 10th with an RBI single against winner Michael King (1-0) — Bogaerts’ third hit of the game. Pinch-hitter Gleyber Torres tied it in the bottom half with a sacrifice fly off Ryan Brasier.

Donaldson, acquired from Minnesota last month, grounded a single up the middle against rookie Kutter Crawford (0-1) leading off the 11th. Isiah Kiner-Falefa, who started the inning as the automatic runner at second base, scored in his Yankees debut.

It was the Yankees’ sixth overall walk-off win on opening day. The last time came when the defending World Series champions began the 1957 season by beating the Washington Senators 2-1 as Berra scored on a single by Andy Carey.

PADRES 3, DIAMONDBACKS 0

PHOENIX (AP) — San Diego newcomer Sean Manaea was brilliant on the mound through seven no-hit innings, Jurickson Profar hit a two-run homer and the Padres beat Arizona.

Manaea (1-0) handed a no-hitter off to the Padres bullpen a night after Yu Darvish did the same. Tim Hill gave up a leadoff single to David Peralta in the eighth, the second day in a row the left-handed reliever blew a no-hit bid.

Taylor Rogers — making his first appearance for the Padres since being acquired in a trade with the Twins — earned the save.

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Arizona left-hander Oliver Perez (0-1) took the loss after giving up Profar’s homer. Diamondbacks starter Merrill Kelly threw four scoreless innings.

METS 7, NATIONALS 3

WASHINGTON (AP) — A benches-clearing interruption after Mets star Francisco Lindor was hit by a pitch overshadowed Max Scherzer’s return to Nationals Park even as the three-time Cy Young Award winner pitched New York past Washington.

On an evening that began with a 14-minute delay because the stadium lights weren’t working and sputtered to an end with a 38-minute rain delay in the top of the ninth, Scherzer (1-0) allowed three runs and three hits in six innings in his debut for the Mets.

Washington reliever Steve Cishek’s second pitch caught Lindor in the jaw in the fifth inning, the fourth Met plunked in 1 1/2 games. Mets manager Buck Showalter led the charge out of the dugout, cursing as he headed to the field. Mets and Nationals players and coaches met on the grass between home and third base.

Josiah Gray (0-1) allowed four runs and eight hits in four-plus innings. He was acquired from the Dodgers for Scherzer last July.

ASTROS 13, ANGELS 6

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Jeremy Peña hit his first major league home run while his parents were being interviewed on the broadcast, Kyle Tucker went deep twice and Houston pounded Los Angeles.

Houston homered six times in total, with Jose Altuve, Aledmys Díaz and Alex Bregman also connecting. It’s the 16th time Houston has had at least six homers in a game, and five of those have come since 2019. The Astros had 14 hits.

Peña, Houston’s rookie replacement at shortstop after Carlos Correa signed with Minnesota, got his first big league hit with a single in the second inning. He then led off the seventh with a drive to left-center while his mom and dad were being interviewed in the stands by Apple TV+.

Rafael Montero (1-0) was the winning pitcher while Oliver Ortega (0-1) took the loss.

TIGERS 5, WHITE SOX 4

DETROIT (AP) — Javier Báez wound up with a winning RBI single on a game-ending replay reversal in his Detroit debut.

With two out and a runner on third in the ninth inning, Báez hit a drive to right off Liam Hendriks that sent AJ Pollock back to the wall. Pollock appeared to make a juggling catch, but the ball struck the wall before going off the outfielder’s glove.

The new-look Tigers started celebrating as they realized what happened, and the opening-day crowd joined in after umpire Marvin Hudson announced the reversal of the call.

Eric Haase hit a solo homer off Hendriks (0-1) earlier in the ninth.

Chicago’s Andrew Vaughn hit a tiebreaking solo homer off Gregory Soto (1-0) in the top of the ninth.

RAYS 2, ORIOLES 1

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Budding star Wander Franco had three hits, Francisco Mejía snapped an eighth-inning tie with a pinch-hit sacrifice fly and AL East champion Tampa Bay beat Baltimore.

Franco started the winning rally with a single to right off reliever Dillon Tate (0-1). It was the 21-year-old’s first game since signing a $182 million, 11-year contract in the offseason. He batted .288 with seven homers and 39 RBIs in 70 games as a rookie.

Pinch hitter Ji-Man Choi drew a walk and reigning AL Rookie of the Year Randy Arozarena beat out an infield single to load the bases against right-hander Jorge Lopez. After Brandon Lowe hit into a force play at the plate that took Franco off the bases, Mejía lifted his sacrifice fly to left field.

Andrew Kittredge (1-0), the fifth of seven Tampa Bay pitchers, worked one inning. Lowe drove in the Rays’ other run with a third-inning sacrifice fly, and offseason addition Brooks Raley got the final out in the ninth for the save.

PHILLIES 9, ATHLETICS 5

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Kyle Schwarber homered in his first at-bat with Philadelphia, reigning NL MVP Bryce Harper knocked in a run and Aaron Nola struck out seven against Oakland.

Schwarber’s first opening day in Philadelphia was one to remember for the 29-year-old slugger. Fresh off the $79 million, four-year contract he signed last month, Schwarber crushed a 427-foot homer to right off A’s starter Frankie Montas (0-1).

Schwarber’s one-out walk in the third inning ignited a four-run burst. Harper stretched a single into a double when a replay review showed he slid under the tag of second baseman Tony Kemp, then scored on Rhys Hoskins’two-run single. Didi Gregorius’ single up the middle made it 5-0.

Nola (1-0), the 2018 All-Star who went 9-9 with a 4.63 ERA last season, made his fifth straight opening day start. Chad Pinder hit a solo homer in the fourth. Seth Brown’s three-run shot in the seventh chased Nola. The A’s made it 6-5 but Brad Hand struck out Jed Lowrie looking with runners on second and third to end the seventh.

DODGERS 5, ROCKIES 3

DENVER (AP) — Freddie Freeman reached base three times and scored a run in his Los Angeles debut, helping Walker Buehler (1-0) and the Dodgers beat Colorado.

Freeman struck out in his first at-bat. He was then hit by a pitch, walked and lined a sharp single before taking a called third strike in the eighth.

Colorado’s big offseason acquisition, Kris Bryant, had a double and a walk but struck out against Craig Kimbrel with a runner on to end the game. Kimbrel got his first save in Dodger Blue.

Buehler (1-0) pretty much picked up right where he left off in 2021, getting the win in allowing two runs and four hits in five innings while striking out five. Denver native Kyle Freeland (0-1) started out strong before things went sideways in the fourth.

BRAVES 7, REDS 6

ATLANTA (AP) — Charlie Morton allowed only two hits while pitching into the sixth inning while returning from a broken leg, Travis d’Arnaud drove in three runs and Atlanta held off Cincinnati.

Asked to hold a 7-3 lead, new Braves closer Kenley Jansen gave up three ninth-inning runs in his Atlanta debut.

Morton (1-0) was in top form after suffering a broken right leg when struck by a comebacker in Game 1 of the Braves’ World Series win over Houston. The 38-year-old righty retired the first 12 batters and allowed two runs with five strikeouts with one walk in 5 1/3 innings.

The Braves took advantage of seven walks by Reds pitchers. Reds rookie Reiver Sanmartin (0-1) lasted only 2 1/3 innings, and his five walks led to his early exit.

GIANTS 6, MARLINS 5, 10 innings

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Austin Slater doubled with two outs in the 10th inning for his first career walkoff RBI, sending San Francisco past Miami.

Thairo Estrada hit a tying home run to start the bottom of the ninth off Anthony Bender. Then Slater came through against Anthony Bass (0-1), scoring Darin Ruf. It marked San Francisco’s first walkoff win on opening day since beating the Padres on April 6, 1987, at Candlestick Park.

Jazz Chisholm Jr. put Miami ahead with a two-run homer with one out in the top of the ninth as the Marlins capitalized against San Francisco’s bullpen once Logan Webb left the game.

Jacob Stallings homered in the eighth and delivered an RBI single in the ninth off closer Camilo Doval to fuel Miami’s rally. José Álvarez (1-0) recorded the final out of the 10th.

MARINERS 2, TWINS 1

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Robbie Ray tossed seven impressive innings in his Seattle debut, Mitch Haniger homered and the Mariners opened with a win over Minnesota.

Ray (1-0) surrendered just three hits, walked four and struck out five. He made the opening day start after leaving Toronto and signing a five-year, $115 million contract with Seattle.

Drew Steckenrider allowed a leadoff hit in the ninth but secured the save after Gary Sánchez hit a towering flyball to the left-field wall.

Haniger is the longest-tenured Mariners player, having started with them in 2017. He connected for a two-run homer in the first inning off rookie Joe Ryan (0-1).

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