TORONTO — Once again Joe Girardi’s pregame meeting with the media revolved mostly around a singular topic:
His club’s feeble offense.
“It’s important we get the bats going,” he said. “It’s hard to win 2-1 every night.”
The Yankees did not make it to even two runs Tuesday night and they most certainly did not win, falling, 4-1, to the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.
The offense managed six hits — one more than it produced in Monday’s 4-2 loss — wasting a terrific outing by CC Sabathia, who was also betrayed by his bullpen.
Surprisingly, it was Dellin Betances, who came on with a runner on second and none out in the seventh, only to allow a pair of hits and three runs, one of which was charged to Sabathia.
The veteran lefthander, who came in 3-3 with a 2.83 ERA, including 2-1 with a 0.45 ERA over his previous three starts, allowed two runs and five hits over six innings as the Yankees (24-27) lost for the fifth time in seven games.
Blue Jays lefthander J.A. Happ, who entered the game 6-2 with a 3.20 ERA, including 2-0, 1.38 in two starts against the Yankees got the no-decision, allowing one run and four hits over six innings.
Sabathia did not looked pleased when he handed the ball to Joe Girardi in the seventh and his mood likely didn’t improve once in the dugout.
Edwin Encarnacion had doubled on a 3-and-1 fastball to start the seventh and Girardi called on Betances with Justin Smoak, who homered in the fourth, coming up.
Betances, with 46 strikeouts in 23 1⁄3 innings coming in, struck out Smoak and was fortunate when Russell Martin sat on a curveball and hammered it, but right at Aaron Hicks on the warning track in left. But after walking Devon Travis on four pitches, Kevin Pillar sliced an 0-and-1 fastball to right. Rob Refsnyder, starting there for Carlos Beltran, the night’s designated hitter, charged and fielded the ball cleanly but his throw home was off line as Encarnacion slid across to make it 2-1.
Darwin Barney followed with a two-run single to right — Refsnyder again made a poor throw home — to make it 4-1.
Blue Jays reliever Joe Biagini (3-1) got the win with relief help from Jesse Chavez and Roberto Osuna, who pitched a scoreless ninth for the Blue Jays (28-26) to record his 12th save.
The Yankees had their chances against Happ, going 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position, that frustration starting in the first.
Refsnyder doubled with one out and went to third on Mark Teixeira’s flyout to deep left. Happ walked Beltran to put runners at the corners but Starlin Castro could not get the run in, grounding to short to end the 28-pitch inning.
Sabathia quickly got his team back in the dugout with a perfect 12-pitch bottom half in which he struck out Josh Donaldson and Encarnacion.
The Yankees got to Happ in the second for their only run. Chase Headley led off with a double — just his third of the season — and Austin Romine, starting at catcher for Brian McCann against the lefthander, reached on an infield single. Didi Gregorius, hitting a team-best .356 against lefty pitchers this season, got hit on the wrist but swung at the pitch and eventually flew to short center, not deep enough to get Headley in. But Hicks beat out a potential double-play grounder to second, the 4-6 forceout scoring Headley to make it 1-0.
Sabathia allowed a leadoff single to Donaldson in the fourth but erased him when Encarnacion grounded into a double play (a safe call at first was overturned on a replay challenge). It was the second of three double plays induced by Sabathia.
Sabathia, however, fell behind Smoak 2-and-0 and the first baseman jumped on the next pitch, a fastball, and sent it to left-center for his fifth homer, tying it at 1.