Jul 29, 2014
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Van Kirk's Grand Slam Propels D-Jays To Victory

Unlike the night before, the D-Jays hold on to their four-run lead.

Van Kirk's Grand Slam Propels D-Jays To Victory Van Kirk's Grand Slam Propels D-Jays To Victory Van Kirk's Grand Slam Propels D-Jays To Victory

The Dunedin Jays defeated the Brevard Manatees 6-5 on Tuesday, in a rare morning start.

For the second consecutive game, the Blue Jays jumped out to a 4-0 first-inning lead, compliments of a Brian Van Kirk grand slam.

It was the 25-year-old's third homer of the year. The Red Sox originally drafted Van Kirk in the 20th round of the 2004 First Year Player Draft. After playing three years of college ball — his freshman year at Miami-Dade, sophomore year at Tennessee and junior year at Oral Roberts — he was selected in the the 21st round of the 2008 draft by the Toronto Blue Jays.

Van Kirk added two walks — along with his home run — to improve his batting average to .302 on the season.

Second baseman Ryan Schimpf contributed the other two RBIs with a pair of doubles. The 23-year-old is 8-for-18 in his five starts since coming off the disabled list. 

Florida State League All Star relief pitcher Wes Etheridge earned his 24th save in as many attempts. The league leader struck out four of the five batters he faced.

The Jays (38-31) and Manatees (27-42) close out the first half of the Florida State League in Brevard County on Wednesday. The Jays will open the second half of the FSL on the road with two three-game series in Tampa and Daytona. The next home game for the Jays will be June 29 against the Lakeland  Flying Tigers.

Notes: Adonys Cardona, 17, pitched three scoreless innings in the Gulf Coast League's Blue Jays' 10-7 loss to the Pirates on Tuesday. The young man from La Sabana, Venezuela, struck out four and issued no walks.

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