Springer's two blasts power Astros past Blue Jays

Springer's two blasts power Astros past Blue Jays

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- George Springer recorded a pair of homers and five RBIs as the Astros walked all over the Blue Jays in a 10-1 victory on Wednesday afternoon at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.

Springer's first shot of the day came in the fourth when he sent an offering from right-hander Jeremy Jeffress over the wall in right field.

"He threw me two fastballs," Springer said of his first home run of the spring, which extended the Astros' lead to 6-1. "The object there was to get the guys in from second and third. The infield was back and I was just trying to hit something hard up the middle and I got a pitch I could handle on the outer half and was able to get the barrel to it."

The 23-year-old struck again in the fifth with right-hander Claudio Vargas on the mound for Toronto. This time it was a two-run shot, and Springer finished the afternoon 2-for-3, also reaching base in the seventh when he was hit by a pitch.

"I was trying to get my timing back and just hitting the ball hard," he said. "I honestly say the key to those at-bats were the guys who were on base ahead of me. [Matt] Dominguez and [Carlos] Corporan had some great at-bats and were able to get me into a fastball-hitting count."

Alex White made his debut on the mound for the Astros after arriving in an offseason trade with Colorado. He faced a lineup that could resemble the one Toronto uses on Opening Day and managed to get through his two innings unscathed.

White, who is competing for a spot in the starting rotation, allowed just one hit and one walk while striking out one. He threw 14 of his 25 pitches for strikes in what will go down as a strong first appearance of the spring.

"It was good to get out there and get some work in," White said. "I felt really good. There were a few things I wanted to work on mechanically with my delivery and it felt great today. If I can stay consistent in my delivery, I think my command is pretty good."

Right-hander Brad Lincoln got the start for Toronto but was unable to finish his lone inning of work. Lincoln allowed four runs on three hits and a walk while throwing just 12 of his 24 pitches for strikes. The 27-year-old likely will attempt to throw two innings his next time out in an effort to transition to a possible starting role in the Minor Leagues.

"Just go out there and try to feel good," Lincoln said. "This early in spring you're still going to be knocking off the rust a little bit, but you still have to take some things out of it and work on some things between outings.

"Anybody that's out on the bump, playing the field or in the box, they want to compete and they want to do good but when things go bad, you have to take the good things out of it and work on what went wrong."

Shortstop Jose Reyes led the way for Toronto on offense, going 3-for-3. Catcher J.P. Arencibia also enjoyed a strong day at the plate as he recorded a leadoff solo home run in the third inning off Wesley Wright for his first shot of the spring.

Other standouts for the Astros included right fielder J.D. Martinez, who went 2-for-3 with an RBI, and designated hitter Fernando Martinez scored a pair of runs and drove in two more.

Up next for Astros: Lucas Harrell will become the first Astros starter to take the mound for the second time when he gets the ball for Thursday's 12:05 p.m. CT game against the Yankees in Kissimmee. Harrell, the Astros' Pitcher of the Year last season, went two innings and allowed four hits and two runs on Saturday against the Phillies in Clearwater in his first spring start. The game will be televised on CSN Houston and MLB.TV with Alan Ashby making his return to the Houston airwaves.

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.