|Date of game: 6/20/2014
Recap: Cincinnati vs. Toronto
Cincinnati, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Edwin Encarnacion's second three-run homer of the night highlighted the Blue Jays' improbable comeback, as Toronto rallied from an eight-run deficit to stun the Cincinnati Reds, 14-9, on Friday.
The AL East-leading Blue Jays were staring at their eighth loss in 10 games after the Reds erupted for eight runs in the second inning.
But Encarnacion's first three-run blast followed by a two-run shot from Juan Francisco and a solo homer by Brett Lawrie kept Toronto close.
Toronto trailed 9-8 entering the eighth and evened things on Dioner Navarro's RBI double, then added five runs more in the ninth, with Encarnacion's league- leading 23rd round-tripper putting the exclamation point on the thrilling win.
The Blue Jays went to the bullpen early when spot-starter Liam Hendriks failed to make it out of the second inning.
Cincinnati batted around in the frame, which began with Jay Bruce reaching on a single and Devin Mesoraco launching one into the left-field seats.
Skip Schumaker and Zack Cozart followed with base hits, and Mat Latos' slow dribbler to short allowed Schumaker to race home. Billy Hamilton added a bloop, RBI single into short right field, and after Todd Redmond took over for Hendriks, Brandon Phillips tacked on a two-run double.
Bruce capped the surge with a two-run homer to right-center, but the Blue Jays remained in striking distance despite the early deficit.
Encarnacion got three runs back in the third with a home run off Latos, who wound up surrendering five runs over 5 2/3 innings of work.
The Reds had taken a 9-3 lead in the fifth on Mesoraco's run-scoring groundout, but two runs in Toronto's next at-bat made things interesting.
Adam Lind's single drove in a run and Jose Bautista worked a bases-loaded walk to bring in another. Encarnacion stepped in with a chance to tie, but Logan Ondrusek induced a threat-ending flyout to keep it a 9-5 game.
Jose "Jumbo" Diaz, who spent 12 seasons in the minor leagues without ever appearing in the majors, made a long-awaited but ultimately forgettable big league debut in the seventh.
The hefty right-hander served up an opposite-field homer to Lawrie and a pinch-hit, two-run shot to Francisco that trimmed the Reds' lead to one.
Navarro tied the game with an RBI single in the eighth off Jonathan Broxton, who had not given up a run in his previous 14 appearances.
Aroldis Chapman (0-2), who was riding a 13-game scoreless streak, gave up the lead entirely in the ninth. The flame-throwing closer walked Colby Rasmus to open the inning, and Erik Kratz brought in the go-ahead run with a double.
Melky Cabrera added an RBI single, and Encarnacion, who played four-plus seasons in Cincinnati, finished off the dramatic inning with a no-doubter off Sam LeCure.
Hendriks, who was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo in an effort to give their starting rotation a rest, was charged with six runs on six hits.
Toronto's bullpen responded admirably, with Dustin McGowan (4-2) picking up the victory with a scoreless inning of relief.Game Notes
Encarnacion has 17th career multi-home run game, six coming this year ... The
Blue Jays recorded 16 hits and worked nine walks ... Lawrie set a career high
with his 12th home run ... Game time: 4:00.