Danny Jansen homers and Kevin Gausman fans 7 as Blue Jays beat Nationals 6-3

TORONTO (AP) — Danny Jansen homered and scored three runs, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. drove in a pair and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Washington Nationals 6-3 on Monday night.

Toronto leads the majors in interleague play 27-14 .

Jansen hit his career-best 16th home run, a solo shot off left-hander Robert Garcia in the third inning, as Toronto began a stretch of 12 games against teams at or near the bottom of the standings. The Blue Jays visit Colorado and Oakland next, then host Kansas City.

The Rockies, Athletics and Royals all trail their divisions. Washington came into this series one game ahead of the last-place New York Mets in the NL East.

“We know winning is hard,” Jansen said. “It’s hard to do, regardless of who you’re playing. We’re going into each game with the goal to win that game.”

Toronto won despite playing without shortstop and AL hits leader Bo Bichette (right quad), and third baseman Matt Chapman (right middle finger).

“Those guys are obviously huge pieces of our team, but it’s awesome to see the contributions from everybody,” Jansen said. “That’s what it’s going to take.”

Blue Jays right-hander Kevin Gausman pitched five innings to win for the first time in three starts. Gausman (10-8) allowed three runs and seven hits.

“I got lucky that I was able to go five,” Gausman said. “They did a really good job of grinding out at-bats. They laid off a lot of really good splits.”

Gausman walked two and struck out seven, boosting his AL-leading total to 202. Atlanta’s Spencer Strider leads the majors with 236.

“Two hundred strikeouts before September is really impressive,” manager John Schneider said.

Trevor Richards pitched two innings, Génesis Cabrera worked the eighth and Jordan Hicks finished for his 12th save in 15 chances.

Joey Meneses had three RBIs and CJ Abrams had three hits and three stolen bases but the Nationals lost their second straight after winning the previous three.

Washington right-hander Josiah Gray (7-11) allowed four runs and four hits in two innings, extending his winless streak to six starts. He walked four and struck out two.

“It looked like he was struggling with his mechanics,” manager Dave Martinez said. “He was just flying open really bad. He couldn’t stay behind the ball. He was pushing a lot of balls. His misses were way off.”

The two-inning outing was the shortest of Gray’s career.

“I just didn’t have it today,” Gray said. “I feel for the guys in the bullpen. Having to cover six, seven innings is never easy.”

Meneses hit an RBI single in the first but Toronto scored four in the second. Guerrero hit an RBI double, and George Springer and Davis Schneider both had RBI singles.

Meneses cut it to 5-3 with a two-run double in the fifth but Kevin Kiermaier replied with an RBI single off Andrés Machado in the bottom half.


Blue Jays: Toronto put Chapman on the 10-day injured list and recalled INF Ernie Clement from Triple-A Buffalo.


A two-time All-Star, Bichette was scheduled to undergo an MRI on the sore right quad that forced him out of Sunday’s 10-7 loss to Cleveland after five innings.

Bichette was batting .314, second in the AL behind Tampa Bay’s Yandy Diaz.


Washington selected the contract of C Drew Millas from Triple-A Rochester and transferred RHP Carl Edwards Jr. (right shoulder) to the 60-day IL. OF Blake Rutherford was optioned to Triple-A following Sunday’s loss at Miami.


Blue Jays rookie Schneider started at third base, his third position in three games. Schneider started at second on Saturday and in left field Sunday.


RHP José Berríos (9-9, 3.55 ERA) is scheduled to start for Toronto on Tuesday against Washington LHP MacKenzie Gore (6-10, 4.38).


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