offence scored early and often in a 12-2 victory

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  • TORONTO -- Marcus Stroman took care of the Kansas City Royals in the top of the first. The Toronto Blue Jays potent offence took care of the rest. Stroman, the 23-year-old Blue Jays first-round draft pick in 2012, was solid in his first Major League start and the Toronto offence scored early and often in a 12-2 victory Saturday afternoon at Rogers Centre. "It feels great," Stroman said. "Anytime you get that kind of run support, its fun to pitch." After retiring the Royals in order in the first inning, the final two on strikes, Stroman sat as the Blue Jays scored seven runs in the bottom of the inning. The first eight Toronto batters reached base, a new club record. The Blue Jays stretched that lead to 11-1 after four innings in emphatically ending a two-game losing streak. "Its hard," Stroman said of the wait between his first and second inning. "But obviously youre not going to turn down seven runs. However long it takes the offence to keep mashing, Ill sit there all day. "This offence is so special. This lineup is like playing a video game." Stroman, who earlier in May made five appearances out of the Blue Jays bullpen, improved his record to 2-0 and saw his earned run average fall from 12.79 at the start of the day to 7.30. Stroman gave up five hits, struck out six and didnt issue a walk over six innings before 31,652 fans. Recalled from triple-A Buffalo Friday, the five-foot-nine right-hander threw 94 pitches, 63 of those for strikes. "I thought he was terrific," Toronto manager John Gibbons said of Stroman. "He got a bunch of strikeouts. He was attacking the (strike) zone, working fast. Doing all those things we expected. "That was his first start of the year and he showed us something. Were pretty impressed. It was a good bounce-back win for us." Juan Francisco had three hits and four runs batted in, Brett Lawrie of Langley, B.C., had two hits and three RBIs and Adam Lind added three hits and two RBIs as the American League East-leading Blue Jays pounded out 14 hits off four Kansas City pitchers. The Blue Jays (33-24) had won a season-high nine straight games before the Royals (26-29) won the first two games of the series Thursday and Friday. Toronto finished May with an American League-best 21-9 record. "Its been a huge month," Gibbons said. "In 2008, we won 20 games and had the best record in baseball and I got fired three weeks later," he quipped. "I always enjoy a good month but it means absolutely nothing in June." The Blue Jays, who were 0 for 10 with men in scoring position and stranded 14 runners in a 6-1 loss Friday, wasted few opportunities in the first inning against Kansas City right-hander Aaron Brooks. Brooks was making just his second career start and first since being recalled from triple-A Omaha. The Blue Jays, who lead Major League Baseball in home runs, scored all their runs without a homer Saturday. Toronto sent 12 men to the plate in the opening inning, the first eight of them reaching base. Each of the first five hitters scored and seven were in before Brooks (0-1) was given the rest of the afternoon off, getting just two outs and yielding five hits, three walks and two hit batters. Jose Bautista doubled in the first run and Franciscos ground-rule double plated two more to make it 5-0. Other than those two extra-base hits, the Blue Jays scored via small ball -- two RBI singles and a pair of bases-loaded walks -- to turn the game into a laugher before all the fans had settled into their seats. "It was good to let (Stroman) take a deep breath and just do what he does and throw all his pitches and let him relax a little bit," said Lind. After Kansas City cut the Toronto lead to 7-1 in the second, Lawries second RBI of the day made it 8-1 in the bottom of the inning. Lind, Lawrie and Francisco drove in runs in the fourth to make it 11-1. Todd Redmond gave up one run over three innings in relief of Stroman to earn his first save of the season. Greg Garcia Jersey . "Im going to send Webbie a six-pack (of beer) tonight," she said. Webb wasnt sure that would help. "Ill probably drink one and go to sleep," the Australian veteran said. The two players set up a Sunday showdown between former HSBC champions after finishing off their third rounds with identical birdies over three of the last five holes Saturday to separate themselves slightly from the rest of the crowded leaderboard. Randy Jones Jersey . Alfredo Simon lowered his ERA to 0.86, and the Reds beat the Chicago Cubs 4-1 Friday for their 16th win in their last 17 games at the Friendly Confines. http://www.padressale.com/padres-rollie-fingers-jersey/ .com) - Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant combined for 51 points and the Oklahoma City Thunder took down the struggling Bucks 114-101 on Tuesday. Franmil Reyes Jersey . Replay backed him up. Adeiny Hechavarria immediately followed the ruling with a go-ahead sacrifice fly for the Miami Marlins, who held on to beat the Seattle Mariners 3-2 on Sunday completing a three-game sweep. Austin Hedges Padres Jersey .J. -- While Martin Brodeur wasnt willing to say he stole one for the New Jersey Devils against the Columbus Blue Jackets, almost everyone else was.KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Mike Moustakas hit two balls that had chances to go deep. The first one was just foul down the right-field line, but the second was fair as Moustakas homered to lead off the 13th inning, lifting the Kansas City Royals to a 7-6 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Thursday. Moustakas homered to right on an 0-2 pitch from Chance Ruffin (0-1), who had not pitched in the majors since 2011. "I knew it was going to get out, but I knew it was going to be foul soon as I hit it," Moustakas said of the first shot. "I got a little too out in front of it. "The second one I knew was going to stay fair. I hit it pretty good. I kept my hands in pretty good. It was pretty special with the race were in right now." The Royals entered the game 5 1/2 back in the wild-card standings. "Soon as Moose hit the first one, I was hoping it would stay fair," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "When it didnt, I turned to Hos (Eric Hosmer) and said, Why is fate tempting us, teasing us like this. Why? "Normally when somebody hits a long foul ball homer and theyve got two strikes on them thats it. I cant remember one time Ive ever seen a guy back it up and hit one fair. So when he hit it fair, it was wow, pretty special." Ruffin retired the first five batters he faced, striking out three. "I was trying to get the fastball down and in," Ruffin said. "He turned on it pretty good. The one he hit out was supposed to be in. I left it in the middle." Louis Coleman (3-0), the eighth Royals pitcher, retired the only batter he faced in the top of the 13th. Kansas City led 6-5 in the ninth inning before Raul Ibanez homered off Greg Holland into the Mariners bullpen with two outs to tie the score. It was Hollands first blown save since May 6 to end his streak of 31 consecutive saves. "He throws 100 (mph) and he has a really good slider," Ibanez said. "I was trying to swing easy, thinking base hit, a single. He threw a slider and I got it in the air to right field. Sometimes if a guy is not throwing too hard you might look to do some damage, but when a guy is throwing that hard you cant try to do too much." The Royals play their next 12 games against the Detroit Tigers and Cleveland Indians, the two teams in front of them in the AL Central. "Every game is crucial and extremely important," Yost said. "Weve seen our players do this the majority of the year. They dont believe if were down by five were out of it or were going to lose the game." Billy Butler went 5 for 5, matching his career high in hits for the Royals, while Emilo Bonifacio went 4 for 6 for his first four-hit game since July 4, 2009. "Its not easy to come back from a five-run deficit," Butler said. "t;That shows the resiliency of this team.dddddddddddd Every game at this point is a must win." The teams combined to use 44 players, including 14 pitchers. The Mariners threatened in the 11th when Dustin Ackley singled and Nick Franklin walked. Kelvin Herrera, the sixth Royals pitcher, replaced Tim Collins and struck out Franklin Gutierrez and Mike Zunino to end the inning. Butler drove in the tying run with his fourth single in a three-run seventh. Justin Maxwells sacrifice fly scored Butler to put the Royals up 6-5. Royals catcher Salvador Perez went 3 for 3 with a double and RBI, but left in the fifth with dizziness. He took a foul shot from Dustin Ackley off his mask in the top of the fifth. Mariners left-hander Joe Saunders was staked to a 5-0 lead, but could not make it through the fifth inning. Saunders gave up a two-run homer to Alex Gordon and an RBI single to Salvador Perez in the fifth. When Justin Maxwell walked to load the bases, Saunders was replaced by Brandon Maurer, who struck out pinch-hitter Carlos Pena on three pitches to end the inning. Saunders allowed three runs and 11 hits and a walk in 4 2-3 innings. In his past six starts, he is 1-3, allowing 50 hits, including six home runs, in 31 2-3 innings. Maurer, however, gave up four consecutive hits to start Kansas Citys three-run seventh. Justin Smoak hit a two-run homer in the Mariners three-run first. It was Smoaks third home run in 13 at-bats off Royals right-hander Jeremy Guthrie. Kendrys Morales singled home Abraham Almonte, who had doubled, with the first Seattle run. Hosmers fielding error in the third allowed Kyle Seager to score another run. The Mariners made it 5-0 in the fourth on Brad Millers sacrifice fly. Guthrie was pulled after six innings, allowing five runs and seven hits and two walks. He is 1-3 with a 5.11 ERA in his past six starts, yielding 53 hits and 21 earned runs in 37 innings. NOTES: Seattle RHP Felix Hernandez, the 2010 AL Cy Young Award winner, will miss his scheduled start Sunday and has been pushed back to Wednesday. Hernandez left his Monday start against the Royals in the seventh inning with lower back cramps. "He wants to start on Sunday and we understand that," manager Eric Wedge said. "He felt a lot better yesterday and feels better again today. Hes going to go out and play some catch, but were going to be cautious with him." ... Royals 2B Chris Getz, who suffered a possible concussion on Tuesday, said he was feeling better Thursday, but left the stadium to see a doctor. He suffered a concussion Sept. 12, 2010, and missed the remainder of the season. ... Royals INF Jamey Carroll started at third base after not playing in the previous seven games. ' ' '
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