Rangers-Jays: Toronto Wins Again
On Wednesday night, Rod Barajas more than atoned for his missed opportunity with the bases loaded a night earlier... but it almost wasn't enough.
Barajas hit two two-run bombs in his first two at-bats of the night against Texas, and the Blue Jays looked great, leading the Rangers 7-3 going into the eighth.
Texas scored a run on a groundout in the eighth, before rallying against Jays closer B.J. Ryan in the ninth inning.
Chris Davis (HBP) and Jarrod Saltalamacchia (walk) reached base to lead off, before Ian Kinsler grounded to short. Second baseman Aaron Hill's throwing error, however, prevented the Jays from turning the DP, allowing Davis to score.
Kinsler, who moved to second on the play, promptly stole third and scored on a groundout.
Down to their last out, the Rangers were hoping Michael Young could come through again with some ninth-inning heroics—his ninth-inning bomb on Sunday against Kansas City won it for Texas—and Young didn't disappoint.
Young homered off Ryan, his fourth of the year, tying the game 7-7.
It was B.J.'s second blown save of the year.
In the 11th, Kevin Millar came through with a single over a drawn-in outfield, scoring Vernon Wells from second to give the Blue Jays the 8-7 win.
It was Millar's third hit of the game, and all his safeties actually counted for something.
Millar, batting seventh ahead of Barajas, had kept the second inning alive and triggered a three-run outburst in the fourth.
With two outs in the second, Millar singled and came around to score on Barajas' home run.
With one out in the fourth, Millar doubled before Barajas' second dinger.
Both of Barajas's homers broke ties.
Still, Millar and Barajas weren't the only heroes.
Alex Rios' batting average was raised by 40 points (up to .246) as he finally broke out with four hits, collecting two RBI singles. Jose Bautista, the No. 9 hitter, went four-for-five and scored a pair of runs. Adam Lind remained hot, getting an RBI single in the sixth. Lind is now on an eight-game hitting streak.
Not to be outdone, Jason Frasor also contributed to the win.
Despite this being a slugfest—and the Jays outhit the Rangers 17-10—Toronto still got some clutch pitching after Ryan's meltdown.
Fraser (3-0) entered to start the 10th, and promptly retired all six batters he faced, pitching two perfect innings with two strikeouts.
So, a total team effort, with Barajas, Millar, Bautista, Rios, and Frasor coming up huge.
Jays are now 11-5.
Can they win their fifth straight series by taking the finale on Thursday?
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