OAKLAND, Calif. — Justin Smoak got thrown out on a wild sequence that began with another sensational play by Oakland centre fielder Ramon Laureano, but wound up with four hits as the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Athletics 5-4 Sunday for a three-game sweep.
Smoak homered to help Toronto post its first road sweep of at least three games since 2015 and cap a 6-1 trip for manager Charlie Montoyo’s club. The Blue Jays went 1-5 on their first road trip earlier this season.
Both starting pitchers were forced to leave early.
Toronto’s Aaron Sanchez was pulled after four innings because of a broken fingernail, a problem that has plagued him in the past.
A’s starter Brett Anderson (3-1) sprained his left ankle coming off the mound trying to field Randal Grichuk’s single in the third. Oakland was swept at home by Toronto for the first time since 1993 after winning all seven games against the Blue Jays last season.
Daniel Hudson (1-1) retired five batters. Ken Giles got four outs for his seventh save.
The A’s scored three runs in the eighth and had two on with one out in the ninth before Giles struck out Josh Phegley and got Robbie Grossman to pop out.
Smoak led off the second with a single and Teoscar Hernandez followed with a long drive to centre. Laureano made his way back to the wall, leaped and made the catch.
The strong-armed Laureano, who has already nailed several runners this season, quickly recovered and aimed to get the retreating Smoak, unleashing a throw from the edge of the warning track. The peg sailed far over the head of first baseman Kendrys Morales and carried into the expansive foul territory at the Coliseum, one-hopping to near the dugout.
Smoak tries to advance on the overthrow and was caught at second base by catcher Nick Hundley, who backed up the play.
Freddy Galvis added two hits and Alen Hanson singled, scored and had an RBI in his first game in the leadoff spot for Toronto.
Blue Jays: Galvis left in the ninth inning three batters after making a sliding stop on Stephen Piscotty’s infield single. Richard Urena, who was called up from Triple-A Buffalo earlier in the day, replaced Galvis.
Blue Jays: RHP Trent Thornton (0-2, 5.40 ERA) faces the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday in Toronto following an off day. Thornton has allowed nine runs over his previous two starts.
Athletics: RHP Chris Bassitt (0-0) makes his season debut in place of injured starter Marco Estrada against Texas on Monday.