Yankees sweep Jays with rain-shortened whitewash

Brett Lawrie, of the Toronto Blue Jays, is helped to the locker room by a trainer and manager John...

Brett Lawrie, of the Toronto Blue Jays, is helped to the locker room by a trainer and manager John Farrell after falling into the photographers box trying to catch a foul ball against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on July 18, 2012. (AFP)

KEN FIDLIN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:29 PM ET

NEW YORK - The record-setting heat wave finally broke at Yankee Stadium late Wednesday afternoon, but not before the Blue Jays got boiled in oil.

The Yankees put an exclamation point on a three-game sweep of the Blue Jays with a 6-0, rain-shortened whitewash. On the series, they humiliated the Jays 18-4 but that’s not where the losses ended.

On top of the damage inflicted on Toronto’s dwindling wild card chances, they lost two of their top four hitters to injuries. Jose Bautista is gone for at least two weeks, possibly longer, after injuring his wrist completing a swing on Monday.

In the series finale, Brett Lawrie took an ugly tumble into a ridiculously designed camera well next to the visiting dugout attempting to chase down a foul ball.

“It was a costly series,” said manager John Farrell. “Obviously getting swept first and foremost, and then the injury to Jose in game one and then today with Brett going over the railing.

“It’s not what we envisioned. This is a very good (Yankee) team that is probably playing their best baseball of the year over the last month or so.

“We know the challenges are steep that we have to overcome to maintain this position in this overall wild card position, but we have to move on. These three games are in the books and we have to go into Boston with the same aggressiveness.”

The initial diagnosis is that Lawrie has a contusion on his right calf and if that’s the extent of the damage, then he is extremely lucky because it looked as if he could have sustained multiple injuries.

With one out in the bottom of the third, Mark Teixeira fouled a one-strike pitch toward a camera well just beyond the Toronto dugout. Lawrie put himself in position at the fence, then dove into the well to try to make a backhanded catch. In the process, his right leg whipped over his head and his lower calf came down hard on top of another chain-link fence several feet behind the boundary fence.

“I just wanted to get to the rail," Lawrie said of the play. "I thought the ball was coming back and it did and as soon as I got to the point of no return, I just went right over and unfortunately caught my foot on top of that rail and banged myself up a little bit.

“I hit (the rail) so flush, it was a long fall, it felt like I was in the air for five seconds.”

Lawrie had no idea the camera well was as deep as it was.

“From where the cameras sit behind that, it looks like it cuts off right there, but it actually goes down another three and a half feet ... It sure felt like it.”

Lawrie is confident after an off-day he’ll be ready to play in Boston on Friday.

“It’s sore right now, just a little stiff, it just felt like someone took a bat and crushed me in the back of the leg. It’s like a stiff charleyhorse right now, it will be alright.”

Bautista and Lawrie aside, Ricky Romero’s fragile recovery became another bit of collateral damage Wednesday. After struggling much of the last two months, the Blue Jay lefthander had pitched decent back-to-back outings but he was taken to the woodshed by the Bronx Bombers in this one.

Five of the first six men he faced came away with base hits, including a two-run home run by Teixeira. By the time the first inning was over, New York had scored four times, which was three more than they eventually needed because Yankee starter Hiroki Kuroda was dealing zeros all afternoon.

By the time he left the game after the sixth inning, Romero had given up six runs on 12 hits with two walks. He now owns an 8-6 record with a 5.22 ERA and is averaging more than 4.5 walks per nine innings.

“I left some pitches up in the first inning and that hurt me,” said Romero. “With two strikes on Teixeira I hung a changeup -- a bad pitch -- and he hit it out.

“We have to move on. It’s disappointing to get swept here against a very good team. We weren’t able to do much. When you put your team in a big hole like that, it’s tough, especially against a guy like Kuroda who’s been going good.”

Romero has not run from his mistakes. In fact, it’s possible he has been too hard on himself, allowing his mistakes to add to the pressure he feels as a rotation leader.

Before the game, Farrell addressed Romero's tendency to dramatize his struggles more than necessary.

“Ricky has finally come to the point where’s not overplaying the situation, talking more about it than he needs to,” he said. “There are times when things don’t go his way, but he can’t blow it out of proportion and put additional pressure on himself to lead by example. In some ways, in the past, that kind of compounded the situation.”


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