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Yankees bullpen allows 10-run inning in loss to Blue Jays

The concept of “lanes” is frequently discussed in the Yankees’ dugout, where manager Aaron Boone and pitching coach Matt Blake debate optimal situations in which to use relievers. As Chad Green completed his warmup tosses, a four-run lead in his back pocket, they envisioned a wide-open highway toward a much-needed victory.

Instead, Green and Adam Ottavino combined to record only one out, enduring a nightmarish 10-run frame that saw 13 Blue Jays come to bat. The 43-minute half-inning featured five hits, four walks and an error, capped by Danny Jansen’s grand slam as the Yankees absorbed a crushing 12-7 defeat on Monday evening at Sahlen Field in Buffalo, N.Y.

With the loss, the Yankees (21-20) fell two games behind second-place Toronto in the American League East. A cocktail of injuries and underperformance has sent Boone’s club to 14 losses in their last 19 games, bearing little resemblance to the Bombers who opened the season on a 16-6 tear. Improbably, the Yanks are in legitimate danger of falling out of the postseason picture.

Luke Voit and Aaron Hicks hit back-to-back homers in the first inning and Miguel Andújar cracked his first homer of the season in the fourth off Hyun Jin Ryu, who had permitted only one long ball in his previous six starts. Clint Frazier added a two-run double off Ryu in the fifth, and Hicks’ bases-loaded walk in the sixth seemed to set the Yanks’ bullpen playbook into motion.