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Blue Jays 6, Nationals 1

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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TORONTO -- The remnants of the Montreal Expos lost in their return to Canada.

Ted Lilly struck out a season-high eight in five innings, and Vernon Wells homered twice to lead the Toronto Blue Jays over the Washington Nationals 6-1 Friday night.

After playing in Montreal as the Expos from 1969 though last season, Canada's first major-league baseball team moved to Washington during the offseason and was renamed the Nationals.

Several fans in the crowd of 17,465 wore hats and jerseys with logos of the Expos, whose departure left the Blue Jays as Canada's sole big league baseball team.

"Lilly pitched a great game. He was throwing his fastball again and again," Montreal outfielder Jose Guillen said. "We were just missing his pitches."

Marlon Byrd drove in the lone run for the Nationals with an RBI single in the fourth.

Lilly (2-4), skipped over in his previous turn in the rotation, allowed one run and five hits and dropped his ERA from 10.41 to 8.82. Lilly, who walked none, had allowed five or more runs in his each of his previous five starts. Manager John Gibbons had thought about having Lilly miss a second start but decided against it after conferring with his coaches.

"Mentally, I was pretty low as far as confidence," Lilly said. "It's nice to finally contribute to help us win a game. It's been awhile."

Gibbons said Lilly was overdue.

"We've been saying sooner or later he'd be back," Gibbons said. "He's bread and butter is that fastball. He can throw it right by you. I thought he was more aggressive tonight. He needed that"

Pete Walker pitched three innings to complete the six-hitter and get his second career save, his first since 2002.

Wells hit a two-run homer off Claudio Vargas (0-2) in the fourth and a solo shot off Zach Day in the eighth, the eighth multihomer of his career.

Wells finished 2-for-4, raising his average to .224.

"I feel good right now, but I'm still a work in progress," said Wells, who has 11 of his 21 RBI in the last eight games.

Toronto ended a string of 17 scoreless innings by scoring five runs in the fourth. Aaron Hill hit a two-run triple off Vargas for his first major league hit, and Ken Huckaby added an RBI single.

Hill, playing his first major league game, went 2-for-4. The Blue Jays recalled Hill from Triple-A Syracuse to take the place of injured third baseman Corey Koskie, who is to have surgery next week on his broken right thumb.

"I wasn't really too nervous. I don't think its hit me yet," Hill said.

Wells put a shaving cream pie in Hill's face while during a television interview after the game.

"I knew it was coming, so I was just sitting waiting to wear it," Hill said.

Vargas, who lasted just 1 1/3 innings in a start on Tuesday, allowed five runs and six hits in 3 2/3 innings.

"I got in trouble because I started throwing the ball up," Vargas said.

Notes

Washington 1B Wil Cordero, on the 15-day DL with a strained left knee, began a scheduled six-day rehab assignment with the Single-A Potomac Nationals. ... Toronto C Gregg Zaun is expected to come off the 15-day DL Tuesday. Zaun sustained a concussion while breaking up a double play this month.

 
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
Toronto

V. Wells
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 2
RBI 3
Toronto

T. Lilly
IP 6.0
H 5
ER 1
BB 0
K 8
 

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Washington Nationals
Brad Wilkerson, CF4010010 .287
Jamey Carroll, 2B3000111 .310
Jose Guillen, RF4000022 .288
Vinny Castilla, 3B4110000 .300
Nick Johnson, 1B4020001 .315
Marlon Byrd, LF4011021 .370
Jeffrey Hammonds, DH3010001 .185
Brian Schneider, C3000014 .234
Cristian Guzman, SS3000022 .201
Totals321611912 
Batting
2B - Vinny Castilla (13, Lilly)
RBI - Marlon Byrd (4)
Team LOB - 6
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Outfield Assists - Marlon Byrd 1, Brad Wilkerson 1
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Washington Nationals
Claudio Vargas (L,0-2) 3.2655201 9.00
Jon Rauch 2.1200020 3.07
Zach Day 2311211 6.00
IBB - R. Adams by Claudio Vargas
WP - Jon Rauch (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Claudio Vargas 63-41, Jon Rauch 37-26, Zach Day 30-17
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Claudio Vargas 5-5, Jon Rauch 1-3, Zach Day 2-1
Batters Faced - Claudio Vargas 18, Jon Rauch 8, Zach Day 9
Toronto Blue Jays
Orlando Hudson, 2B3000101 .265
Frank Catalanotto, LF3020100 .282
    Reed Johnson, LF0000000 .309
Alex Rios, RF4010002 .310
Shea Hillenbrand, 3B4110003 .349
Vernon Wells, CF4223011 .224
Eric Hinske, 1B3120100 .275
Russ Adams, SS3100112 .229
Aaron Hill, DH4122002 .500
Ken Huckaby, C3011010 .182
Totals3161164311 
Batting
2B - Eric Hinske (10, Vargas)
3B - Aaron Hill (1, Vargas)
HR - Vernon Wells 2 (8, Vargas, Day)
RBI - Vernon Wells 3 (21), Aaron Hill 2 (2), Ken Huckaby (5)
2-OUT RBI - Vernon Wells 2 (8), Aaron Hill 2 (2), Ken Huckaby (2)
SB - Eric Hinske (5, 2nd base off Rauch/Schneider)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - R. Adams-Hudson-Hinske
Toronto Blue Jays
Ted Lilly (W,2-4) 6511080 8.82
Pete Walker (S,1) 3100110 1.61
HBP - Hammonds (by Ted Lilly)
Pitches-Strikes - Ted Lilly 89-65, Pete Walker 41-26
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ted Lilly 4-6, Pete Walker 6-1
Batters Faced - Ted Lilly 24, Pete Walker 10
Game Information
Attendance - 17465
Game Time - 2:27
Temperature - 66
Umpires - Home - Paul Nauert, First Base - Gary Darling, Second Base - Larry Poncino, Third Base - Mike Fichter