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Toronto at Texas

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Rangers 6, Blue Jays 1

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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ARLINGTON, Texas -- John Rheinecker had allowed 37 hits over his previous four starts, and he knew he had to make some adjustments if he expected to pitch deep into the game against the hot-hitting Toronto Blue Jays.

He did.

The rookie left-hander threw seven strong innings and Mark DeRosa had three hits and three RBI to lead the Texas Rangers to a 6-1 victory Monday night.

Rheinecker (4-2) gave up one run and five hits, struck out three and walked one for the Rangers, who had lost seven of eight.

Rheinecker had won only one of his previous four starts, and the Rangers wanted him to slow down his delivery while decreasing the time between pitches.

"The important thing was staying within myself, not trying to throw too hard and letting the ball move," Rheinecker said.

Toronto started the day leading the majors in batting average (.297), slugging percentage (.488), hits and total bases, making the Blue Jays quite a challenge for a rookie facing them for the first time.

The Blue Jays began the night hitting .321 against left-handers and they had 10 or more hits in each of their previous five games.

"When you look down their offensive numbers, that makes his outing even more remarkable," Rangers manager Buck Showalter said.

Right-handed hitters had a .383 average against Rheinecker at the start of the night, and Blue Jays manager John Gibbons had seven right-handed bats in his lineup.

Rheinecker, who allowed five runs in four innings of his previous start, worked inside against the right-handed batters.

"I stayed in on a lot of guys this time," Rheinecker said.

Ted Lilly (8-8) nearly matched Rheinecker, allowing two runs and five hits in six innings. He struck out six and walked three.

The Blue Jays failed to make up ground in the AL East on the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees, both of whom lost on Monday night.

"We're trying to catch Boston," Lilly said. "We've got to go out and win every night. As a starting pitcher, you've got to take some responsibility."

DeRosa, inserted into the starting lineup to give regular third baseman Hank Blalock a night off, led off the sixth with his fourth homer on a changeup by Lilly that caught too much of the plate to give the Rangers a 2-1 lead.

"I'm not going to sleep as well as I'd like to because of that," Lilly said. "A changeup out over the plate in that situation, I don't think I needed to throw a strike right there."

Texas, which had scored 14 runs in its previous seven games, pushed across a run in the second on Jason Botts' sacrifice fly.

Rheinecker shut out the Blue Jays over the first five innings, allowing one hit.

Rheinecker retired six straight hitters before the Blue Jays opened the sixth by loading the bases on consecutive singles by Reed Johnson, Aaron Hill and Vernon Wells.

After Troy Glaus was retired on a pop-up, Johnson scored the tying run on Shea Hillenbrand's fielder's choice. Rheinecker got out of the inning with the score tied at 1 when Bengie Molina grounded out.

"The key was that sixth inning," Gibbons said.

The Blue Jays usually feast on fastballs, and they were unable to string together good at-bats against a soft-throwing lefty.

"Those finesse guys give us trouble," Gibbons said. "He's good. He's been struggling lately, but he was on tonight."

Texas stretched its lead to 5-1 with a three-run seventh against Pete Walker on Michael Young's RBI double and DeRosa's two-run single.

Young made it 6-1 in the eighth when he drove in a run with his major league-leading 30th double.

Notes

Rheinecker was making his eighth career start, all this season. He has a 1.57 ERA and a run support average of 6.91 in his four wins. ... The Blue Jays opened a seven-game road trip after a 6-3 homestand. Toronto had won five of its previous six. ... Glaus got his eighth start of the season at SS. He has started 65 of 76 games at 3B, but Gibbons wanted to get Hillenbrand's bat into the lineup. ... The Rangers have won seven of their last eight against the Blue Jays.

 
Copyright 2014 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
Texas

M. DeRosa
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 1
RBI 3
Toronto

T. Lilly
IP 6.0
H 5
ER 2
BB 3
K 6
 
Toronto Blue Jays
Reed Johnson, CF4110011
Aaron Hill, 2B4020002
Vernon Wells, DH4020001
Troy Glaus, SS4000025
Shea Hillenbrand, 3B4011001
Bengie Molina, C4000015
Lyle Overbay, 1B4000000
Chad Mottola, LF3000000
   a- Frank Catalanotto, PH1000000
Eric Hinske, RF3010120
Totals351711615 
a-grounded out for Mottola in the 9th
Batting
2B - Vernon Wells (, Rheinecker)
RBI - Shea Hillenbrand ()
Team LOB - 8
Toronto Blue Jays
Ted Lilly (L,-) 6522361
Pete Walker 0.2333320
Scott Downs 0.1000010
Shaun Marcum 1211030
IBB - Mench by Ted Lilly, Teixeira by Pete Walker
Pitches-Strikes - Ted Lilly 101-62, Pete Walker 31-15, Scott Downs 5-3, Shaun Marcum 25-17
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ted Lilly 5-7
Batters Faced - Ted Lilly 26, Pete Walker 8, Scott Downs 1, Shaun Marcum 5
Texas Rangers
Gary Matthews Jr., CF5000031
Jerry Hairston Jr., LF4220100
Michael Young, SS4122111
Mark Teixeira, 1B4010112
Mark DeRosa, 3B4233001
Ian Kinsler, 2B4010013
Kevin Mench, RF1000312
Jason Botts, DH3001036
Gerald Laird, C4110021
Totals33610661217 
Batting
2B - Michael Young 2 (, Walker, Marcum), Ian Kinsler (, Lilly), Gerald Laird (, Walker)
HR - Mark DeRosa (, Lilly)
SF - Jason Botts ()
RBI - Michael Young 2 (), Mark DeRosa 3 (), Jason Botts ()
2-OUT RBI - Michael Young ()
SB - Mark Teixeira (, 2nd base off Lilly/Molina)
Team LOB - 10
Texas Rangers
John Rheinecker (W,-) 7511130
Francisco Cordero 1200020
Bryan Corey 1000010
Pitches-Strikes - John Rheinecker 90-58, Francisco Cordero 17-12, Bryan Corey 16-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Rheinecker 12-7, Bryan Corey 1-1
Batters Faced - John Rheinecker 28, Francisco Cordero 5, Bryan Corey 3
Game Information
Attendance - 30021
Game Time - 2:42
Temperature - 91
Umpires - Home - Brian Gorman, First Base - Bill Miller, Second Base - Eric Cooper, Third Base - Gerry Davis