KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Bo Bichette hit one of three Toronto home runs and five Blue Jays pitchers combined on a two-hitter in an 8-0 win over the Kansas City Royals on Monday night.
Ross Stripling (2-1) earned the win as he allowed just one hit over five innings, matching his season high. He struck out two and didn’t walk a batter. Stripling pitched more than four innings for just the second time this season. Stripling, who made his sixth start, has been used out of the bullpen eight times.
“You have no idea how happy I am that Strip (Stripling) went five innings,” Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said. “That way we could save our (bullpen) arms. We also swung the bats, but he threw (less than) 60 balls and get through five. He was lights out.”
Stripling was pleased with the result as well.
“Going into it I thought I was going to have four innings,” he said. “I knew I would be in the 50- to 60-pitch range. I hadn’t gone more than 35 in the last couple of weeks. I was able to go five innings. That was the priority: stay efficient and try not to put too much on the bullpen.
Bichette’s home run was the first Toronto hit of the night after the game was delayed 2:05 because of weather.
Daniel Lynch (2-5) took the loss. He allowed six runs on six hits, with two walks and four strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.
Both managers were impressed with Stripling’s effort.
“He set everything up for us,” Montoyo said. “He was fun to watch tonight. He’s done a great job wherever we needed him.”
Kansas City manager Mike Matheny was impressed as well.
“We could never get in hitters’ counts,” he said. “He was in control from the top.”
Both starting pitchers were efficient at the start of the game. Michael A. Taylor’s one-out single in the…