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Blue Jays survive late scare in Cleveland


Blue Jays survive late scare in Cleveland
The Toronto Blue Jays survived a ninth-inning breakdown Saturday to beat the Cleveland Indians 5-4 in Ohio.

Cliff Lee, the 2008 American League Cy Young winner (0-2), entered the game looking for both his and his team's first win of the season, but the Blue Jays had the hurler on the ropes early on, chasing him from the mound after five innings.

"This is not where we wanted to be or where we expected to be," said Lee, who didn't lose his second decision until July 6 last season and finished 22-3. "But there's nothing we can do about it now. It's done. Our job is to come in here and keep them from sweeping us."

While Scott Downs shut out the Indians out in the eighth, closer B.J. Ryan was brought in for the ninth with a 5-1 lead and gave his team a scare as he walked the bases loaded.

Mark DeRosa cleared them with a double off the left-field wall, making the score 5-4 with two out. Jason Frasor was then brought in by the Blue Jays to face Victor Martinez with the tying run on second base.

Frasor got the save with a strikeout on a changeup that fooled Martinez.

The win improves the Blue Jays' record to 5-1 while Cleveland drops to 0-5. The Indians will get another chance to get that first win against the Blue Jays when they finish their three-game set Sunday afternoon in Cleveland.

Halladay goes 7 innings

Toronto starter Roy Halladay (2-0) had a steady game, throwing 111 pitches, scattering five hits over seven innings of work. He struck out seven and walked two Cleveland batters.

"That's Doc," said Toronto manager Cito Gaston. "You kind of expect that out of him."

With two runners in scoring position in the top of the first, the Blue Jays' Alex Rios hit a sacrifice fly to score Marco Scutaro, making it 1-0 Toronto after the half-inning.

Scutaro was a dangerous man for the Blue Jays all afternoon, going 1-1 with three walks, scoring once and posting one RBI.

Toronto added to Lee's misery in the second inning when Scott Rolen smashed a cutter to left field for a double. He was advanced by Kevin Millar's single to left, putting runners on the corners.

After putting out the next two Blue Jays batters, Lee walked Scutaro with four straight pitches, loading the bases and bringing up Aaron Hill, who hit a two-RBI single to right field.

Millar appeared to be headed toward a certain out as Indians' catcher Kelly Shoppach had the path to home plate blocked. However, Millar loosened the ball from the grasp of Shoppach during the attempted tag, giving the Blue Jays a 3-0 lead.

"We're all thrilled," said Halladay. "We've scored a lot of runs and our pitching has been pretty good. It's a matter of keeping all of that going."

Wells piles up RBIs

Vernon Wells started off the third inning with a double and scored after Adam Lind hit a line drive to centre field, notching his 12th RBI of the young season and extending Toronto's lead to four runs.

Lee's day was finished after the fifth inning, giving up four runs off seven hits and throwing a total of 102 pitches. He walked four and struck out five Toronto batters.

Cleveland's Vinnie Chulk threw two and a third innings in relief before Joe Smith was brought to the mound in the eighth.

Smith surrendered a sacrifice fly to Scutaro that scored John McDonald, who was brought in to pinch-run for Millar.

Halladay started the game by forcing the Indians to three straight ground-outs. That included a diving stab made by Hill, who made an impressive toss to first base from his knees for the out on Grady Sizemore.

Cleveland scored its only run against Halladay in the bottom of the fifth, when a single by Cabrera lead to an RBI double by Sizemore. Even with Sizemore on third base after a steal, Halladay wasn't fazed. He struck out DeRosa and forced Martinez to ground out, ending the inning and stranding Sizemore.


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: April 12, 2009

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