Cruz has 2 homers, 7 RBIs as Mariners thump Blue Jays

Seattle Mariners beat the Toronto Blue Jays 14-5 on Saturday

Seattle Mariners' Nelson Cruz, second from left, is embraced by teammate Kyle Seager after hitting a three-run home run in eighth-inning baseball game action against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto, Saturday, July 23, 2016. (Fred Thornhill/The Canadian Press via AP)

TORONTO (AP) — Hisashi Iwakuma pitched six innings to win his fifth straight start, Nelson Cruz hit his ninth career grand slam and homered twice, and the Seattle Mariners routed the Toronto Blue Jays 14-5 on Saturday.

Cruz hit his slam off R.A. Dickey in the third, then added a three-run drive off Drew Storen in the eighth for his 20th career multi-homer game. He has 25 home runs this season, the fourth-highest total in the AL.

It was the 13th time in team history a Mariners player has recorded seven RBIs. The team record is eight, jointly held by Mike Blowers, Mike Cameron and Alvin Davis.

Kyle Seager hit a two-run homer and Nori Aoki had two RBIs and scored twice as the Mariners used a season-high 19 hits to win their third straight.

Iwakuma (11-6) allowed two runs and four hits.

Unbeaten since June 22 at Detroit, he is 5-0 with a 2.50 ERA in his past five outings and 10-2 in 12 starts since May 20.

Wade LeBlanc pitched the final three innings for his first save.

Former Mariners players Michael Saunders and Justin Smoak combined for three home runs against their old team, but it was nowhere near enough for the Blue Jays, who gave up a season-worst 14 runs.

Saunders hit two solo homers, one off Iwakuma in the sixth and another off LeBlanc in the eighth. It was his eighth career multihomer game and third this season.

Saunders, who also connected in Friday’s 2-1 loss, matched his career high with 19.

Smoak hit a two-run drive off LeBlanc in the eighth, his 11th.

Cruz’s first homer came after Dickey (7-11) hit consecutive batters to load the bases in the third.

Dickey left after the first four batters reached safely in the fourth, his shortest start of the season. He gave up six earned runs, matching a season worst, and seven hits.

Dickey has yielded 24 homers this season. Only Kansas City’s Ian Kennedy and Chris Young (26) have allowed more.

Seattle widened its lead with a five-run sixth, when the first five batters all got hits off reliever Jesse Chavez.

Cruz batted with the bases loaded for a second time but grounded into a double play. Seager chased Chavez with a homer to center, his 19th.


Mariners: Seattle placed SS Ketel Marte (mononucleosis) on the 15-day DL, retroactive to July 20, and recalled LHP David Rollins from Triple-A Tacoma.


Mariners: LHP Wade Miley (6-7, 5.36) is 0-5 with a 5.60 ERA in his past five starts.

Blue Jays: LHP J.A. Happ (12-4, 3.43) is 6-0 in seven starts since his most recent loss, June 6 at Detroit. Happ’s next victory will be his career-high 13th.

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