Blue Jays' Francisco just double shy of cycle

Juan Francisco of the Toronto Blue Jays hits a two-run double in the fifth inning during MLB game...

Juan Francisco of the Toronto Blue Jays hits a two-run double in the fifth inning during MLB game action against the Boston Red Sox on July 24, 2014 at Rogers Centre. (Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images/AFP)

MIKE RUTSEY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:38 PM ET

The Jays got more than a big performance out of Marcus Stroman.

They also received a big day at the plate from Juan Francisco.

The big infielder has been really struggling the past two months, through June and July hitting at a .186 clip. But on Thursday at the Rogers Centre against the Boston Red Sox, he came through with a triple in the second, a two-run home run in the third and a two-run single in the fifth. His bid to hit for the cycle fell short when, in his final at-bat in the seventh, he flied out to left.

What was the difference this day?

“He wasn’t swinging and missing that off-speed pitch,” manager John Gibbons said. “In fact, he hit the two-run homer on a changeup. (Starter Rubby) De La Rosa is a fastball-changeup guy and he picked one out.

“In the last week or so, he’s had better at-bats and he’s one of those guys where, if he puts it in play, he gets a lot of hits, that’s the key for him.


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