DUNEDIN, Fla. (AP) — The Toronto Blue Jays are taking no chances with newcomer George Springer.
Marcus Semien homered and drove in four runs as Toronto finished off a three-game sweep of the Atlanta Braves with a 7-2 win Sunday after Springer exited early with leg fatigue.
Joe Panik pinch-hit for Springer in the sixth inning.
“Legs felt tired, that’s how he said it,” Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said. “It was hot today.”
Springer was the designated hitter for the fourth consecutive game since making his Toronto debut Wednesday. The World Series MVP when Houston won its first title in 2017 signed a team-record $150 million, six-year deal with the Blue Jays this offseason but missed time because of a strained oblique and later because of a right quadriceps strain.
“He didn’t do anything for a long time, so we have to be careful,” Montoyo said.
Springer hit his first two homers with Toronto on Saturday night.
Semien hit a two-run homer during a three-run eighth to help Toronto win for the seventh time in nine games.
Braves starter Ian Anderson (2-1) lasted just four innings, allowing four runs and six hits during an 89-pitch outing.
“It was a grind from the get-go,” Atlanta manager Brian Snitker said. “Just didn’t have a good feel for anything. Just one of those days.”
Anderson was coming off wins against the New York Yankees and Chicago Cubs in which he allowed five hits in 13 2/3 scoreless innings. The right-hander limited the Cubs to one hit over seven innings on April 27.
Danny Jansen, hitless in his previous 35 at-bats, had an RBI single in the second and Semien’s two-run double in the third put Toronto up 3-1.
Jansen also singled in the fourth and scored to make it 4-1 on Bo Bichette’s double.
“It feels great…