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Wells carries Blue Jays past Athletics

Jul 3, 2007 - 6:41 AM OAKLAND, California (Ticker) -- When Vernon Wells bats leadoff, he jump-starts the offense for the Toronto Blue Jays.

Wells was a one-man wrecking machine, going 4-for-5 and hitting a pair of home runs as the Blue Jays routed the Oakland Athletics, 10-4, on Monday night.

Wells who is 13-for-35 with five homers and 11 games in eight games as the leadoff man, tied a career high with the four hits and two homers.

"That's different, going up and leading off the game, especially on the road," Wells said. "I just made some changes, got back to basics ... see the ball and hit the ball and whatever happens after that, happens. The (home runs) came in situations where I was able to get the inning started, we were able to score some runs and hopefully continue to get better as an offense and be more consistent.

"That's something we haven't been able to do this year and I'm one of the reasons it's been that way this year since I've been one of the most inconsistent people on the team this year."

Wells reached base five times Monday as the Blue Jays snapped a four-game losing streak.

Josh Towers (4-5) pitched five innings, allowing four runs and five hits. He struck out four and walked two in improving to 6-2 lifetime at the Coliseum with a 4.10 ERA. Towers notched consecutive wins for the first time since August 12-17, 2005.

"I love this stadium but I don't know what it is that adds extra confidence," Towers said. "I don't know if it's the extra foul territory or if I just have good vision with the catcher but I love pitching here. We've won three in a row over my last three starts so that's what feels really good. We weren't (winning) any of my starts last year or the start of this year so to win three in a row, it's a good sign for us."

"I made the decision after five (innings) with the middle of their lineup and all those lefties coming up," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "He fell behind and then we bounced back. They got two more but he got us through five."

Toronto had six consecutive hits and eight straight batters reached base in a six-run third inning that erased a 2-0 lead. With one out, Wells got it started with a booming home run to left field off Oakland's Lenny DiNardo.

"Wells is one of the better hitters in this league and if you leave a ball over the plate for him, he'll hit it a long way," Oakland manager Bob Geren said. "He's a big-time player."

Alex Rios, Troy Glaus and Frank Thomas singled off DiNardo, with Thomas driving in his 42nd run. Aaron Hill doubled down the left field line to plate Glaus and Adam Lind had a run-scoring single.

But the insult to injury in the inning was a squibber off the bat of Jason Phillips toward the mound. DiNardo fumbled the ball and failed to record an out, allowing the fifth run to score.

DiNardo had an early exit and his worst outing of the season, pitching only 2 1/3 innings and giving up six runs - four earned - and eight hits. He has lost three of his last four decisions.

"Basically, I was leaving the ball up," DiNardo said. "I looked at the tape and it was like night and day. My pitches were up. The first two innings, I felt like I was on my game. I was pounding the strike zone down and now I have to look at what happened in the third and work on it."

The Jays took advantage of the error on Royce Clayton's sacrifice fly, scoring Curtis Thigpen off reliever Colby Lewis.

DiNardo was 0-1 with a 9.60 ERA in eight previous lifetime appearances - including one start - against Toronto.

"They got a lot of hits tonight and found all the holes," Geren said. "It wasn't our night on the mound. We scored enough runs to win the game on a normal night the way we've been pitching."

After the A's scored twice in the fourth on Dan Johnson's two-run homer to cut the deficit to 6-4, Wells led off the sixth and again homered to left to start another rally. It was the 16th time Wells had homered twice in a game.

Rios singled to left center, stole second and scored on Thomas' single to center increasing the lead to 8-4.

The Jays added two more runs in the seventh. Reliever Ron Flores walked in a run with the bases loaded and Glaus delivered a sacrifice fly.

The A's added two more runs in the seventh on Nick Swisher's two-run double to get within 10-6.

Johnson and Shannon Stewart had three hits apiece for Oakland, which returned home following a 3-7 road trip.








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    TORONTO 0 0 6 0 0 2 2 0 1 11 16 0
    OAKLAND 0 2 0 2 0 0 2 0 1 7 11 2 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: TOR - JOSH TOWERS, BRIAN TALLET (6TH), JASON FRASOR (7TH), SCOTT
    DOWNS (7TH), CASEY JANSSEN (8TH) AND JASON PHILLIPS
    OAK - LENNY DINARDO, COLBY LEWIS (3RD), RON FLO

    Jul 3 1:14 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY SHANNON STEWART SCORED KURT SUZUKI.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, S STEWART ON FIRST, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 11
    OAKLAND 7 BOTTOM, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: M KOTSAY (.243, 0-FOR-3, SF, RBI)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 3 1:08 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY RON FLORES ALLOWED ROYCE CLAYTON TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, A RIOS ON FIRST, V WELLS ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 11
    OAKLAND 6 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: T GLAUS (.280, 2-FOR-4, SF, RBI)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 3 12:56 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY NICK SWISHER SCORED DONNIE MURPHY.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, N SWISHER ON SECOND, S STEWART ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 10
    OAKLAND 6 BOTTOM, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: J CUST (.285, 0-FOR-2, BB)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 3 12:31 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY MARK KOTSAY SCORED MARK ELLIS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, S STEWART ON FIRST, D MURPHY ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 10
    OAKLAND 5 BOTTOM, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: N SWISHER (.268, 0-FOR-3)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 3 12:29 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY TROY GLAUS SCORED JASON PHILLIPS.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, A RIOS ON FIRST, V WELLS ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 10
    OAKLAND 4 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: F THOMAS (.251, 3-FOR-4, 2 RBI)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 3 12:13 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    BASES LOADED WALK TO ALEX RIOS SCORED ADAM LIND.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, A RIOS ON FIRST, V WELLS ON SECOND, J
    PHILLIPS ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 9
    OAKLAND 4 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: T GLAUS (.280, 2-FOR-4)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 3 12:10 AM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY FRANK THOMAS SCORED ALEX RIOS.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, F THOMAS ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 8
    OAKLAND 4 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: A HILL (.273, 1-FOR-3, RBI)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 11:47 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY VERNON WELLS (11) TO LEFT CENTER WITH 0
    OUT IN THE 6TH OFF COLBY LEWIS.
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 7, OAKLAND 4
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: A RIOS (.287, 1-FOR-3)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 11:43 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY DAN JOHNSON (10) TO RIGHT CENTER WITH 1
    OUT IN THE 4TH OFF JOSH TOWERS SCORED ERIC CHAVEZ.
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 6, OAKLAND 4
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: M ELLIS (.269, 0-FOR-1)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 11:23 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY ROYCE CLAYTON SCORED CURTIS THIGPEN.
    SITUATION: 6 RUNS IN, J PHILLIPS ON FIRST, A LIND ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 6
    OAKLAND 2 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: V WELLS (.252, 2-FOR-2, HR, RBI)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 11:03 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY LENNY DINARDO ALLOWED AARON HILL TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 5 RUNS IN, J PHILLIPS ON FIRST, A LIND ON SECOND, C
    THIGPEN ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 5
    OAKLAND 2 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: R CLAYTON (.229, 0-FOR-1)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 11:00 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY ADAM LIND SCORED FRANK THOMAS.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, A LIND ON FIRST, C THIGPEN ON SECOND, A HILL
    ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 4
    OAKLAND 2 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: J PHILLIPS (.211, 0-FOR-1)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 10:58 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY AARON HILL SCORED TROY GLAUS.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, A HILL ON SECOND, F THOMAS ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 3
    OAKLAND 2 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: C THIGPEN (.357, 0-FOR-1)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 10:55 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY FRANK THOMAS SCORED ALEX RIOS.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, F THOMAS ON FIRST, T GLAUS ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 2
    OAKLAND 2 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: A HILL (.272, 0-FOR-1)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 10:53 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY VERNON WELLS (10) TO LEFT WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 3RD OFF LENNY DINARDO.
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 1, OAKLAND 2
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: A RIOS (.286, 0-FOR-1)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 10:46 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY MARCO SCUTARO SCORED ERIC CHAVEZ.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M SCUTARO ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 0
    OAKLAND 2 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: K SUZUKI (.412, 2 HR, 4 RBI)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 10:36 PM


  • AL
    AT OAKLAND - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DAN JOHNSON SCORED JACK CUST.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D JOHNSON ON FIRST, E CHAVEZ ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 0
    OAKLAND 1 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: M ELLIS (.270, 8 HR, 41 RBI)

    Blue Jays vs. AthleticsJul 2 10:33 PM