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Escobar's homer in 10th lifts Jays over Athletics

Apr 6, 2011 - 6:55 AM Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Yunel Escobar hit a two-run game-ending homer in the 10th inning as the Toronto Blue Jays topped the Oakland Athletics, 7-6, in the opener of a three-game set at Rogers Centre.

Escobar finished 3-for-5 with two RBI and scored three runs, and Aaron Hill knocked in a pair and scored a run for the Blue Jays, who responded from a short outing by starter Jo-Jo Reyes.

"These fans have been great the first few games," Hill said.

Reyes lasted only 3 1/3 innings and was charged with five runs on nine hits. He struck out three and walked a batter. Toronto, however, was lifted by a solid performance from its bullpen as Carlos Villanueva pitched 2 2/3 scoreless innings and David Purcey, Shawn Camp and Jon Rauch each threw a scoreless frame.

Jason Frasor (1-0) got the win despite allowing a Josh Willingham solo homer to open the 10th inning.

Willingham finished 2-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored, while Athletics starter Brandon McCarthy went eight innings, allowing five runs -- two earned -- on seven hits. He did not factor in the decision.

Tied at 5-5 at the end of nine innings the Blue Jays sent Frasor in to hold down the margin but leadoff hitter Willingham took a 2-2 slider over the left field wall to give the A's the lead.

Grant Balfour (0-1) took the hill for the home half of the 10th and after allowing a Rajai Davis single to open the frame, Escobar hit a first-pitch fastball over the wall in right to end the game.

Oakland scored three runs in the third inning to begin the scoring. Andy LaRoche opened the frame with a double, and after moving over to third on a Coco Crisp ground out, scored on an Conor Jackson double to left.

Willingham's single put runners on first and third and Mark Ellis laced a double to left that plated Jackson. David DeJesus's infield single scored Willingham to give the A's the early 3-0 lead.

Oakland added two more in the top of the fourth with an LaRoche RBI single and Willingham sacrifice fly, and the Jays got on the board when Escobar scored on a Hill fielders' choice to second.

Toronto evened the game in the sixth inning thanks, in part, to a combination of two Athletics errors. Davis started the frame with a double, and reached second on an Escobar single to third.

Adam Lind scored Davis on a sacrifice fly in foul territory and a Hill single plated Escobar one batter later. Escobar scored from second after advancing on an throwing error by McCarthy on an attempted pickoff.

Kevin Kouzmanoff then committed an error on an errant throw to first that allowed runners to reach first and second. The Jays capitalized on the mistake with an Edwin Encarnacion double to left that scored Hill. Travis Snider grounded out to first that scored Juan Rivera to end the inning, tying the game at 5.

Both teams went scoreless until the extra innings.

"I felt like I could have done a better job in the sixth, getting us out of that," McCarthy said. "Just a couple things here and there, some adjustments I could have made a little quicker probably could have ended that inning a little sooner. I felt pretty good, pretty efficient, threw a lot of strikes. But I have to minimize the damage in that sixth."

Game Notes

Toronto is now 3-1 on a season-opening six-game homestand...Oakland falls to 1-3...The Jays played without third baseman Jose Bautista who missed the game with an undisclosed family issue...Toronto took four of seven matchups from the A's in 2010.

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    Athletics 6, Blue Jays 7  FinalApr 11 11:39 AM

  • OAKLAND: 6
    TORONTO: 7

    Apr 5 10:03 PM

  • Yunel Escobar none-out, two-run Home Run (1) to right scored Rajai Davis to win the game.

    Athletics 6, Blue Jays 7  Bot 10, 0 OutsApr 5 10:02 PM

  • Josh Willingham lead-off Home Run (2) to left. Mark Ellis due up.

    Athletics 6, Blue Jays 5  Top 10, 0 OutsApr 5 9:43 PM
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    RUWTbot Added 53 roots (Close Finish)

    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 5  End 9Apr 5 9:38 PM
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    RUWTbot Added 105 roots (Close Finish)

    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 5  Top 7, 1 OutApr 5 9:03 PM

  • Jayson Nix flied out to center to end the inning.

    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 5  End 6Apr 5 8:55 PM

  • Edwin Encarnacion doubled to left scored Aaron Hill. Runners on second and third with one out and Travis Snider due up.

    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 4  Bot 6, 1 OutApr 5 8:52 PM

  • Aaron Hill advances to second on Brandon McCarthy's error. Runner on second with one out and Juan Rivera at the plate.

    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 3  Bot 6, 1 OutApr 5 8:50 PM

  • Adam Lind sacrifice fly out to third scored Rajai Davis. Runner on second with one out and Aaron Hill due up.

    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 2  Bot 6, 1 OutApr 5 8:49 PM
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    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 1  Bot 5, 1 OutApr 5 8:28 PM

  • Aaron Hill grounded into a fielder's choice, short to second. Yunel Escobar scored. Runner on first with two outs and Juan Rivera due up.

    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 1  Bot 4, 2 OutsApr 5 8:18 PM

  • Josh Willingham sacrifice fly out to center scored Andy LaRoche. Runners on first and second and with two outs and Mark Ellis due up.

    Athletics 5, Blue Jays 0  Top 4, 2 OutsApr 5 8:07 PM

  • Andy LaRoche singled to center scoring Kevin Kouzmanoff. Runner on first with none out and Coco Crisp due up.

    Athletics 4, Blue Jays 0  Top 4, 0 OutsApr 5 7:58 PM

  • David DeJesus infield single to short scoring Josh Willingham. Runners on first and third with two outs and Kurt Suzuki due up.

    Athletics 3, Blue Jays 0  Top 3, 2 OutsApr 5 7:50 PM

  • Mark Ellis doubled to left scored Conor Jackson. Runners on second and third with two outs and David DeJesus due up.

    Athletics 2, Blue Jays 0  Top 3, 2 OutsApr 5 7:48 PM

  • Conor Jackson doubled to left scoring Andy LaRoche. Runner on second with two outs and Josh Willingham due up.

    Athletics 1, Blue Jays 0  Top 3, 2 OutsApr 5 7:42 PM

  • Coco Crisp popped out to first. None on with one out and Daric Barton due up.

    Apr 5 7:09 PM