September 23, 2015 / 4:48 AM / 3 years ago

Bird homers in tenth to lift Yankees past Blue Jays

(The Sports Xchange) - Toronto’s Mark Lowe thought he made a good pitch on his 2-2 slider to Greg Bird in the 10th inning on Tuesday, only for the Yankees first baseman to line the pitch to right field for a three-run homer that led to a 6-4 victory.

Sep 22, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Yankees celebrate victory against Toronto Blue Jays in the tenth inning at Rogers Centre. Yankees beat Blue Jays 6 - 4. Mandatory Credit: Peter Llewellyn-USA TODAY Sports

“Down and away, bottom of the zone and he just leaned out and got it,” Lowe (1-3) said. “Great piece of hitting.”

Bird’s 10th homer of the season brought the Yankees (83-67) to within 2-1/2 games of the first-place Blue Jays (86-65) in the American League East.

“I was pretty pumped up,” Bird said.

“It’s a big win for us, a big team win. It was a cool atmosphere, real intense here. A lot of back and forth. I think the fans definitely got their money’s worth. That was a great game.

“We’re still definitely in it.”

Yankees right fielder Carlos Beltran had homered on a 1-0 fastball from right-hander Liam Hendriks for his 17th homer of the season in the eighth to give the Yankees a 3-2 lead.

Blue Jays catcher Dioner Navarro then tied it with his fifth homer of the season on a first-pitch fastball with one out in the ninth against left-hander Andrew Miller (3-2).

The Blue Jays loaded the bases in the ninth after Navarro’s homer but third baseman Josh Donaldson struck out to send the game to extra innings.

“It’s tough to do anything with two outs, (Donaldson) has done it so many times,” Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said.

“So many guys in that locker room have done that. They battled. Navarro gets that big home run and we load the bases. That’s one thing about this group, they keep coming at you.”

Blue Jays starter Marco Estrada allowed six hits, three walks (one intentional) and two runs while striking out three in 6-2/3 innings.

Yankees right-hander Luis Severino allowed three hits, three walks and two runs with three strikeouts in six innings.

Miller gave up the 35th homer of the season by Toronto designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion in the bottom of the 10th but still got the win.

Compiled by Greg Stutchbury

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