Marcus Stroman sharp as Blue Jays top Braves
Toronto pitcher throws 7 strong innings to collect 2nd victory of season
A rejuvenated Marcus Stroman outlasted Julio Teheran by forcing the Braves to consistently hit grounders.
Toronto's batters did their part in a decisive eighth inning.
Russell Martin's sharp single in Toronto's five-run eighth drove in the go-ahead run, Stroman pitched seven strong innings, and the Blue Jays beat Atlanta 6-2 on Tuesday night to knock the Braves out of first place.
Stroman (2-6) frustrated the Braves by mixing his cutter and slider and recording 14 of his 21 outs on the ground.
"When I'm pairing the cutter and slider it makes it pretty hard on the hitters," Stroman said.
Stroman said he has felt strong since returning from the disabled list on June 23. The Blue Jays have won three of his four starts since he missed six weeks with right shoulder fatigue.
'It was an outstanding effort'
"It was an outstanding effort," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "It doesn't surprise me. I think he has rounded back into shape the way we've seen him so many times."
Stroman gave up one run and six hits with two walks in seven innings.
The Braves, who have lost six of their last seven, fell to second in the NL East after beginning the day tied with Philadelphia for the lead. The Phillies beat the Mets 7-3. Atlanta held at least a share of first since May 30.
Toronto was limited to three hits through seven innings by Teheran and Jesse Biddle, and the game was tied 1-1. The Blue Jays broke out with five hits off A.J. Minter (3-2) and Shane Carle in the eighth.
Aledmys Diaz doubled in two runs before scoring on a double by Devon Travis. Kevin Pillar had a run-scoring single in the big inning, which opened with a fielding error by Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson on Yangervis Solarte's grounder.
Teheran stranded two baserunners in each of the first two innings before giving up Justin Smoak's 13th homer with one out in the third.
Toronto protected the 1-0 lead until the sixth. Kurt Suzuki's single off Stroman (2-6) drove in Ozzie Albies, who opened the inning with a bunt single.
Teheran allowed one run and three hits with three walks in 6 2/3 innings.