Bo Bichette hit a two-run homer, Teoscar Hernandez added a solo homer and the Blue Jays returned to Toronto in triumph after a nearly two-year absence, beating the Kansas City Royals 6-4 on Friday night.
George Springer had three hits and one run in what was his first home game in Canada. The Blue Jays had not played at the Rogers Center since September 29, 2019, when they beat Tampa Bay 8-3.
Displaced from Toronto by border restrictions imposed by the Canadian government amid the pandemic, the Blue Jays played much of the shortened 2020 season in Buffalo, New York, in the park of their Triple A affiliate.
They began the 2021 regular season at their preseason home in Dunedin, Florida, before moving to Buffalo in June.
On July 16, the federal government of Canada granted the Blue Jays an exemption from border restrictions. This made it possible for the team to return home.
The 13,446 spectators made so much noise that it seemed 50,000, especially when the Dominican third baseman ended the match with a bare-handed catch in left field.
Right-hander Ross Stripling (4-6) allowed two runs and four hits in 5 1/3 innings to snap a three-start winless streak.
The defeat went to Daniel Lynch (1-3).
For the Royals, Carlos Santana 4-0. Venezuelan Salvador Pérez 4-1 with one scored and one produced.
For the Blue Jays, the Dominicans Vladimir Guerrero Jr. 3-1, Hernández 4-1 with one scored and one produced, Espinal 4-1. Cuban Lourdes Gurriel 3-1 with an RBI. Venezuelan Breyvic Valera without an official turn but with one scored. (AP)