Jays’ booming bats blast Orioles early in easy win

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. hit a grand slam to cap a six-run first inning and the Toronto Blue Jays defeated the visiting Baltimore Orioles 9-0 Thursday night at Buffalo.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. added a solo homer for the Blue Jays, who opened the four-game series with their season-best fifth straight win.

Reese McGuire had three singles for the Blue Jays.

The Orioles have lost six in a row and 14 of their past 15, with their only win during that span coming June 18 against the Blue Jays.

The Orioles have lost their past 20 road games. The 1943 Philadelphia Athletics hold the American League record with 22 straight road losses. The Arizona Diamondbacks have lost a major league record 23 consecutive road games this season.

Orioles starter Dean Kremer (0-7) allowed six runs, five walks and two hits (including the slam) in one-third of an inning.

Blue Jays starter Anthony Kay (1-2) allowed five hits and two walks while matching a career-best eight strikeouts in five innings.

Kremer walked the first three batters in the bottom of the first. Teoscar Hernandez hit an RBI single, and another run scored on Randal Grichuk’s groundout to second.

Cavan Biggio walked to reload the bases again, and Gurriel hit his eighth homer of the season and his first career grand slam. After another walk, Adam Plutko replaced Kremer.

The Orioles, who stranded two runners in the first, left the bases loaded in the top of the second, and Guerrero hit his major-league-leading 24th homer of the season with one out in the bottom of the inning.

Plutko allowed two more runs in the third. McGuire singled with two out and Marcus Semien and Bo Bichette followed with RBI doubles to increase the Blue Jays’ lead to 9-0.

Anthony Castro replaced Kay and pitched a perfect sixth.

Toronto’s Patrick Murphy pitched around a leadoff double by Pedro Severino in the top of the seventh.

Jacob Barnes took over for Toronto in the eighth and pitched around a single and a walk. Tayler Saucedo threw a perfect ninth.

Baltimore’s Travis Lakins Sr. allowed one hit and struck out three in four shutout innings.