Kawasaki's big hit in 9th gives Toronto 5-4 win

CLEVELAND - Munenori Kawasaki hit a two-run single with the bases loaded in the ninth inning and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Cleveland Indians 5-4 Wednesday night.

Kawasaki, who broke an 0-for-18 slump, lined a 1-2 pitch from Joe Smith into left-center field to score two runs. A third run scored when center fielder Michael Bourn booted the ball for an error.

Colby Rasmus drew a one-out walk off Rich Hill (0-1). After Maicer Izturis flied out, J.P. Arencibia was announced to bat for Josh Thole. Joe Smith relieved Hill but Arencibia singled and Emilio Bonifacio walked to load the bases. Kawasaki fell behind in the count but came up with the clutch hit Toronto's struggling offense has needed.

Neil Wagner (2-3) struck out Ryan Raburn with the bases loaded to end the eighth after the Indians tied the game. Casey Janssen allowed two runs in the ninth before Steve Delabar retired Michael Brantley on a fly ball for his first major league save.

Indians starter Justin Masterson took a two-hit shutout into the seventh but Bonifacio's two-run single put the Blue Jays ahead.

The Indians tied the game in the eighth off All-Star reliever Brett Cecil on Brantley's RBI single.

Following Nick Swisher's walk, Brantley's hard-hit ground ball shot past shortstop Jose Reyes and into center field, tying the game. Carlos Santana lined a single to left but Swisher was forced to stop at third and the bases were loaded.

When Raburn was announced to hit for Jason Giambi, Toronto manager John Gibbons called on Wagner to replace Cecil. Raburn struck out to end the inning.

Asdrubal Cabrera's two-out single and Kawasaki's throwing error in the ninth cut the lead to 5-4 but Delabar recorded the final out.

The Blue Jays, who had been blanked in two of their last three games, struggled against Masterson. Toronto finally broke through thanks to two hits and a pair of walks.

Toronto starter Esmil Rogers allowed one run in six innings.

Adam Lind doubled with one out in the seventh and moved to third on a groundout. Izturis walked on four pitches before Thole walked on a 3-2 pitch to load the bases. Bonifacio, who struck out with a runner on third to end the fifth, lined a 2-1 pitch into right field to score Lind and Izturis, giving Toronto the lead.

The clutch hit came on Masterson's 120th and final pitch of the night. The right-hander, a member of the American League All-Star team, allowed four hits, struck out six and walked five.

The Blue Jays were shut out by four pitchers in Monday's 3-0 loss to Cleveland.

Giambi's RBI single gave Cleveland the lead in the second. Brantley and Santana walked to start the inning before Giambi singled to center. The Indians had runners on first and third but Rogers retired the next three hitters.

Cleveland traded Rogers, who was making his eighth start of the season, to Toronto for infielder Mike Aviles and catcher Yan Gomes in November. Rogers struck out seven and held Cleveland to four hits.

Masterson didn't allow a hit until Rasmus led off the fifth with a double. Rasmus hit a 1-0 pitch over Brantley's head in left field and took third on a groundout. Izturis hit a ground ball which second baseman Jason Kipnis fielded on the edge of the grass. He threw to first for the out and Rasmus held at third. Bonifacio struck out on a 3-2 pitch.

Masterson was coming off his shortest start of the season when he allowed six runs in 4 2-3 innings in a 7-0 loss to Detroit on Friday. He threw a six-hit shutout in his start before against the Chicago White Sox.

Cabrera broke an 0-for-20 slump with a single in the first. Indians reliever Preston Guilmet made his major-leage debut in the seventh and retired both batters he faced.

NOTES: RHP Danny Salazar will be called up from Triple-A Columbus to make his major league debut Thursday against Toronto. "It was a shock when they told me. I didn't know what to say," said Salazar, who began the season at Double-A Akron. Indians manager Terry Francona expects Salazar to have the normal pre-game jitters all pitchers experience before their first start. "If he has any brains at all, he probably won't sleep a wink and he'll tell everybody tomorrow he did," Cleveland manager Terry Francona said. ... The Blue Jays are considering moving Brett Lawrie (sprained left ankle) from third base to second base when he comes off the 15-day disabled list. Lawrie played second Tuesday in a rehab appearance at Triple-A Buffalo. "We're gonna let him do it down there a little bit and we'll kind of look at it when he comes back," manager John Gibbons said. ... RHP Zach McAllister (sprained middle finger) will make a rehab start at Akron on Saturday. Francona said McAllister won't throw his curveball, which caused the injury, on Friday but will use it on his second rehab start. ... RHP R.A. Dickey will start for the Blue Jays in the series finale that will begin at 12:05 p.m.



Print this article Back to Top