for this game

Rolen carries Blue Jays past Royals

Apr 27, 2008 - 11:02 PM By Marc Bowman PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Ticker) - Scott Rolen homered to back Jesse Litsch's five-hit pitching as the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Kansas City Royals, 5-2, Sunday to salvage the finale of a three-game series.

Rolen, who missed the first three weeks of the season due to a fractured middle finger, connected for his first home run of the season, a solo shot to left-center which put the Blue Jays ahead, 2-0, in the first inning.

Three Toronto miscues - two by Litsch - helped the Royals tie it at 2-2 in the third, as David DeJesus drove in Ross Gload and Tony Pena Jr. with a single to center.

Rolen brought in the deciding run with a two-out single to left which scored Alex Rios. Rios scored all the way from first when left fielder Jose Guillen threw to the wrong base.

"That's a big play in the game," Rolen said. "That's an easy one to shut down (on) and, for him to keep hustling, that's how you win ballgames. We've found a lot of ways to lose ballgames. Hopefully, we'll get back on track."

"When I saw it was going to be a hit, I just kept going at full speed," Rios said. "That's the only way I was going to score. I know (third base coach Marty Pevey) very aggressive and I like that. When he saw I had a chance to score, he just told me to keep going."

Litsch (3-1) allowed two runs over seven innings with four strikeouts as Toronto snapped a six-game losing streak. The 23-year-old righthander has permitted fewer than four runs in 16 of his last 21 starts.

"I worked on my sinker the last four days and, today, it helped me out of some jams and kept them off balance," Litsch said. "Being able to use both sides of the plate with command is key. That's what I've been working on and that's what I need to keep progressing."

The Blue Jays struck first, as Rios tripled to lead off the game then scored on a wild pitch ahead of Rolen's homer.

"Rolen is dangerous," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "He can beat you with his glove or his bat. He's got that toughness that we need."

Rios finished with four hits and scored three times.

Toronto added two more runs in the ninth and was aided by Kansas City defensive problems, as Rios' pop fly was allowed to drop untouched in shallow center for a double.

Pena committed a throwing error at shortstop, allowing Rios to score the Blue Jays' final run.

B.J. Ryan pitched a scoreless eighth before Jesse Carlson recorded the first save of his career with an unblemished ninth.

Gil Meche (1-4) surrendered three runs and nine hits in 6 2/3 innings with a walk and three strikeouts. The 29-year-old righthander matched a career high by throwing 129 pitches.

"Overall, (Meche's performance) was better," Royals manager Trey Hillman said. "He's still fighting himself a little. He's getting frustrated with himself, and not locating as good as he would like to."






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    Blue Jays 5, Royals 2  FinalApr 27 8:17 PM


  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    TORONTO 2 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 5 12 3
    KANSAS CITY 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 6 1 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: TOR - JESSE LITSCH, B.J. RYAN (8TH), JESSE CARLSON (9TH) AND ROD
    BARAJAS
    KAN - GIL MECHE, JOEL PERALTA (7TH), JIMMY GOBBLE (9TH)
    AND MIGUEL OLIVO

    HOME RUNS: TOR

    Apr 27 4:55 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY TONY PENA ALLOWED JOHN MCDONALD AND ALEX RIOS TO
    SCORE.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, L OVERBAY ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 5
    KANSAS CITY 2 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: S ROLEN (.400, 2-FOR-4, HR, 2 RBI)

    Blue Jays 5, Royals 2  Top 9, 0 OutsApr 27 4:45 PM
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    Blue Jays 5, Royals 2  Top 9, 0 OutsApr 27 4:45 PM
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    Blue Jays 3, Royals 2  Top 9, 0 OutsApr 27 4:36 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY SCOTT ROLEN SCORED ALEX RIOS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, S ROLEN ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 3
    KANSAS CITY 2 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: M STAIRS (.318, 0-FOR-2)

    Blue Jays 3, Royals 2  Top 5, 0 OutsApr 27 3:32 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DAVID DEJESUS SCORED ROSS GLOAD AND TONY PENA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, D DEJESUS ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: TORONTO 2
    KANSAS CITY 2 BOTTOM, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: A CALLASPO (.353, 1-FOR-1)

    Blue Jays 2, Royals 2  Bot 3, 0 OutsApr 27 3:01 PM


  • AL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    TORONTO 2 2 2 0
    KANSAS CITY 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: TOR - JESSE LITSCH
    KAN - GIL MECHE

    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: D DEJESUS (.364, 1 HR, 7 RBI)
    A CALLASPO (.333, 0 HR, 3 RBI)
    A GORDON (.303, 3 HR, 10 RBI

    Blue Jays 2, Royals 0  Bot 1, 0 OutsApr 27 2:21 PM
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    Blue Jays vs. RoyalsApr 27 12:34 PM