CHICAGO (AP) — Drew Hutchinson wanted to return to the mound after he pitched an ugly first inning.
After the Toronto Blue Jays right-hander recorded two outs, he allowed six runs on a Conor Gillaspie grand slam and a Jordan Danks’ two-run home run.
The Blue Jays warmed up a reliever but wound up keeping Hutchinson in the game. He saved the bullpen by limiting the Chicago White Sox to one run in the next six innings, but Toronto still lost 7-5 on Sunday.
“He settled in and did a heck of a job, kind of a glimpse of what the kid can become and what he’s done,” Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said about Hutchinson. “He gutted it out and gave us a chance to win.
“We had many opportunities. We just couldn’t get that big hit.”
Hutchinson (8-11) held the White Sox to four hits in his final six innings. Chicago scored its seventh run on a Danks sacrifice fly.
Hutchinson has given up six or more runs in four of his last seven starts.
“I just didn’t make good pitches. That’s the bottom line,” Hutchinson said. “I was a little up in the zone. I had two outs, and I had two strikes. I had a good chance to get through the (first) inning with no runs and I gave up six and put us in a big hole.”
After the rocky first inning, Hutchinson said he did a better job of driving the ball down, throwing his sinker and getting groundballs.
Toronto’s Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run homer, his 27th this season and first since returning from the disabled list on Friday. The Blue Jays have lost five of six and 11 of 15 to fall 7 1-2 games behind Baltimore in the AL East and four behind Seattle in the AL wild card race.
Scott Carroll (5-7) allowed five runs in 5 2-3 innings. Jake Petricka earned his ninth save in 12 chances after loading the bases in the ninth.
“I’m really proud of our guys giving me a six-run, five-run cushion,”
Carroll said. “On a lot of days, pitchers wouldn’t get wins the way I pitched.”
Toronto grabbed a 1-0 lead in the first when Jose Reyes scored on a play that was overturned by video review. He originally had been called out at the plate on a throw from first baseman Jose Abreu.
Encarnacion golfed his homer just into the left field bullpen in the fifth as Toronto cut it to 6-4. Pinch-hitter Dioner Navarro singled in a run in the sixth to make it 6-5.
Toronto: 1B Dan Johnson began a rehab assignment at Triple-A on Saturday, going 0 for 3 with an RBI. He’s played 13 games with the Blues Jays and went on the DL with a strained left hamstring.
Blue Jays: LHP J.A. Happ (8-7, 4.20) faces Brewers RHP Mike Fiers (2-1, 1.29) on Tuesday at Milwaukee. Fiers had a career-high 14 strikeouts in his last start, his second since his recall from the minors.
White Sox: LHP Chris Sale (10-2, 2.01) will face Baltimore RHP Bud Norris (10-7, 3.75) on Monday in Chicago.
LACK OF TIMELY HITS
The Blue Jays went 4 for 11 with runners in scoring position and left the bases loaded in the ninth Sunday. Toronto has scored an average 2.7 runs in its last nine road games.
“We’ve been beat up a little bit in the staff and certain starts, but we’ve had some of the right guys at the right time,” Gibbons said. “We just couldn’t get to cash in that big one.”
ON A ROLL
Reyes is hitting .405 during his nine-game hitting streak. He went 3 for 5 with a double Sunday.