Blue Jays 5, Athletics 2
Blue Jays manager John Farrell shuffled things around before the
game and apparently served as a little bit of much-needed fuel for
Adam Lind hit a two-run homer after being demoted from the
cleanup spot to eighth in the order, and J.P. Arencibia and Edwin
Encarnacion each hit solo drives to lead Toronto past the Oakland
Athletics 5-2 on Wednesday.
”Adam responded well to the move in the lineup,” Farrell said.
”It was just nice to score some runs.”
Brandon Morrow (4-1) struck out a season-high 10 in six innings
and won his fourth straight start, outpitching Tyson Ross in a
matchup of former college stars from nearby California who were
2006 teammates. The Blue Jays right-hander went 23 2-3 innings
without allowing a run before Jonny Gomes hit an RBI single in the
Arencibia homered leading off the seventh, this time coming
through with a key hit in a close game. Farrell lifted him for
pinch-hitter Omar Vizquel with the go-ahead run on third in the
ninth inning of Tuesday night’s 7-3 loss – so delivering this time
had to be a nice boost.
Encarnacion started the eighth with his 10th homer, ending an
0-for-21 funk and helping Toronto snap a three-game skid on the
heels of a four-game winning streak. Colby Rasmus had an RBI single
in the sixth that chased Ross (1-3).
Oakland didn’t generate much offense against Morrow, but
received good news after the game that cleanup hitter Yoenis
Cespedes has only a strain on the top of his left hand and not a
He was scratched about an hour before Tuesday’s game after
injuring the hand in batting practice. He might try to hit Thursday
before the opener of a four-game series with the Detroit Tigers to
determine his availability.
”I am very happy to know it is not a significant injury,”
Five of Morrow’s Ks came on called third strikes and he owns a
sparkling 0.67 ERA during the four-start winning streak, allowing
two earned runs over 27 2-3 innings.
He wasn’t happy with four walks – half of his eight total coming
into this start. He had walked only one batter over his previous
”I wasn’t as sharp as I have been. I walked too many guys and
it hurt me in the fifth. I didn’t have a good slider today and that
probably affected things. My stuff was still good,” he said.
”It’s always fun to come here. I always have family and friends
who show up. I got a few texts from my coaches at Cal and then
there are friends who show up unannounced.”
The Blue Jays bounced back after losing the opener of the quick
two-game series on Brandon Inge’s game-ending grand slam against
Francisco Cordero, who was demoted from his closer job before
Wednesday’s game. Handed the ninth-inning duties by Farrell, Casey
Janssen finished with a 1-2-3 ninth for his first save in two tries
”I tried to treat it like any other inning. My heart was going
hard but that’s a good thing,” Janssen said. ”I wanted to attack
the zone and make them earn everything. I’ve done it before. By no
means am I a veteran of the ninth, but I do have experience. You
love pitching in those situations. I’ve felt I really haven’t
contributed much this year and now I have the opportunity to make
more of an impact.”
Farrell also dropped Lind to the eighth hole in the batting
order to try to generate some offense. Lind – who came in hitless
in seven at-bats, with just two hits in his past 29 at-bats and
mired in a 5-for-37 funk overall – singled in the second and put
his team ahead with a two-run drive into the right-field
Ross was done after 5 2-3 innings, tagged for three runs and
five hits. He struck out three and walked three as Oakland’s
three-game winning streak ended.
”I was a little shaky in the first but found that rhythm and
settled in a little bit,” Ross said.
A’s catcher Kurt Suzuki had a scheduled day off, but the timing
was good considering he got hit in the left hand and then also the
thumb Tuesday night.
”It’s a little sore, but when aren’t you sore?” Suzuki
NOTES: The A’s dropped to 5-2 in May. … Oakland’s Jemile Weeks
and Cliff Pennington pulled off a double steal in the first. …
A’s opening-day starter Brandon McCarthy, skipped in the rotation
because of a sore right shoulder, is set to throw a bullpen session
Thursday to determine if he can start Saturday vs. Detroit. ”We’ll
take it step by step,” pitching coach Curt Young said. … Toronto
returns for a four-game set here Aug. 2-5. That will give Blue Jays
INF and former Giants SS Omar Vizquel more time to catch up with
pals from San Francisco. He is retiring at the end of the season
and relishing each road trip these days. … Melvin on facing
Detroit: ”They’re loaded. They’re one of the elite teams in the
American League.”… Someone chanted ”Barry Zito!” in the eighth
inning. The $126 million Giants LHP won the 2002 AL Cy Young Award
while with the A’s.