New York at Toronto

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N.Y. Yankees001110010004101
Toronto «00000400001591

Wells supplies Jays relief, beats Mo with 11th-inning, walk-off homer

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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TORONTO -- John Gibbons pumped his fist after the victory and said his Toronto Blue Jays needed it after a rough couple of days.

Wells homered off Mariano Rivera in the 11th inning to lift the Blue Jays over the New York Yankees 5-4 Thursday night.

Toronto managed to win the day after Shea Hillenbrand was designated for assignment because of some critical comments about the organization.

After Hillenbrand wrote on the clubhouse bulletin board that the "ship was sinking," Gibbons challenged him to a fight. There was no brawl, but the tense relationship between the two reached the breaking point during a team meeting Wednesday night. He was later cut during the game.

"It's been a long tiring few days," Gibbons said. "The guys are tired, yeah we needed that. It was a good way to finish today."

The Blue Jays moved within three games of New York for second place in the AL East. Toronto is five games back of first-place Boston.

"Whatever happens off the field happens. Once we step on the field we have to be able to separate that kind of stuff and go out and play," Wells said. "That's what we get paid to do. If we're not able to do that we don't deserve to be in this race."

Frank Catalanotto led off the 11th with a single to right but was thrown out trying to steal second on a failed hit and run. Wells then hit his 24th homer and the first Rivera (4-5) has allowed all year. It was the first game-winning homer off Rivera since Bill Mueller did it for the Red Sox on July 24, 2004.

Wells, who finished with four hits, was mobbed by his teammates when he touched home plate after the homer to left-center. His drive ended a game that started as a matchup between two of the AL's best pitchers, Toronto's Roy Halladay and New York's Mike Mussina.

Brian Tallet (3-0) pitched the 11th for the victory.

The Blue Jays led 4-3 before the Yankees rallied in the eighth. Halladay retired the first two batters of the inning before he was replaced by closer B.J. Ryan, who blew his third save of the season.

Ryan, a left-hander, allowed a single to lefty Jason Giambi and a walk to Alex Rodriguez before Jorge Posada blooped a broken-bat RBI single to left.

Ryan spoiled a strong outing from Halladay, who allowed three runs and eight hits. Mussina gave up four runs and six hits in seven innings, his outing spoiled by a costly error by third baseman Rodriguez.

Toronto scored four runs in the sixth after Aaron Hill led off with a double and advanced to third on a grounder. Reed Johnson followed with a grounder to Rodriguez, whose throw to the plate sailed past catcher Posada.

Johnson went to second on Rodriguez's team-leading 17th error.

Mussina thought Rodriguez should have conceded the run and thrown to first.

"I know he's played better. I know he's disappointed in the way he's playing. It's just not him right now. We need him back the way he's supposed to be," Mussina said. "I thought he was going to throw to first and then I turn and saw him throw it to home. All he had to do was throw it on target and he was out by 20 feet."

Rodriguez said he needs to work on not sidearming his throws.

"It's frustrating. Obviously, you want the inning to stop. Moose was throwing such a good game," Rodriguez said.

Catalanotto followed with an RBI single to cut it to 3-2.

After Wells singled, Troy Glaus hit a two-run double to left. A sliding Wells beat the throw to the plate.

Johnny Damon hit an RBI double in the first, Bernie Williams hit an RBI grounder in the fourth and Miguel Cairo hit a sacrifice fly in the fifth to give New York a 3-0 lead.

Notes

  • Yankees OF Hideki Matsui could be just days away from taking batting practice after getting a positive report about his broken left wrist on Thursday. Matsui was examined by the same doctor who performed the surgery on the wrist. He injured himself diving for a ball hit by Boston's Mark Loretta on May 11.
  • Halladay is unbeaten in his last nine starts at home, going 7-0.
  • Hill extended his hitting streak to 10 games with his double in the sixth.
 
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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Vernon Wells hits the first game-winning homer Mariano Rivera yields since July 2004.  (Getty Images)
Vernon Wells hits the first game-winning homer Mariano Rivera yields since July 2004. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Toronto

V. Wells
AB 5
R 2
H 4
HR 1
RBI 1
New York

J. Posada
AB 5
R 0
H 3
HR 0
RBI 1
 

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New York Yankees
Johnny Damon, CF5021011 .294
Derek Jeter, SS4000011 .337
Jason Giambi, DH4010012 .256
    Bubba Crosby, PR-DH0100000 .213
   a- Aaron Guiel, PH-DH1000010 .234
Alex Rodriguez, 3B4110101 .284
Jorge Posada, C5031010 .286
Bernie Williams, RF5011023 .279
Andy Phillips, 1B5000012 .251
Melky Cabrera, LF3110101 .272
Miguel Cairo, 2B3111011 .252
Totals3941042912 
a-struck out for Crosby in the 10th
Batting
2B - Johnny Damon (23, Halladay), Alex Rodriguez (14, Halladay), Jorge Posada (15, Halladay), Bernie Williams (21, Halladay)
SF - Miguel Cairo (2)
SH - Derek Jeter (4)
RBI - Johnny Damon (48), Jorge Posada (48), Bernie Williams (40), Miguel Cairo (19)
2-OUT RBI - Jorge Posada (22)
SB - Melky Cabrera 2 (6, 3rd base off Halladay/Molina, 2nd base off Ryan/Molina), Miguel Cairo (10, 2nd base off Halladay/Molina)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Jeter-Cairo-Phillips
E - Alex Rodriguez (17, Wild throw)
New York Yankees
Mike Mussina 7644060 3.39
Scott Proctor 2100020 4.20
Mariano Rivera (L,4-5) 1.1211001 2.10
Pitches-Strikes - Mike Mussina 92-67, Scott Proctor 17-16, Mariano Rivera 15-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mike Mussina 9-6, Scott Proctor 1-3, Mariano Rivera 2-1
Batters Faced - Mike Mussina 27, Scott Proctor 7, Mariano Rivera 5
Toronto Blue Jays
Reed Johnson, RF5101011 .352
Frank Catalanotto, LF5121000 .325
Vernon Wells, CF5241000 .318
Troy Glaus, 3B4012022 .242
Lyle Overbay, 1B4000011 .302
Bengie Molina, C4000021 .281
Gregg Zaun, DH4000010 .293
Aaron Hill, 2B4110010 .302
John McDonald, SS4010001 .221
Totals39595086 
Batting
2B - Troy Glaus (18, Mussina), Aaron Hill (18, Mussina)
HR - Vernon Wells (24, M. Rivera)
RBI - Reed Johnson (26), Frank Catalanotto (45), Vernon Wells (74), Troy Glaus 2 (64)
CS - Frank Catalanotto (2, 2nd base by M. Rivera/Posada)
Team LOB - 3
Fielding
DP - Hill-McDonald, McDonald-Hill-Overbay
E - Bengie Molina (2, Wild throw)
Toronto Blue Jays
Roy Halladay 7.2833030 3.08
B.J. Ryan (BS,3) 1.1211240 1.13
Justin Speier 1000020 3.38
Brian Tallet (W,3-0) 1000000 5.27
Pitches-Strikes - Roy Halladay 93-61, B.J. Ryan 36-24, Justin Speier 17-10, Brian Tallet 9-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Roy Halladay 10-8, Justin Speier 1-0, Brian Tallet 1-2
Batters Faced - Roy Halladay 29, B.J. Ryan 8, Justin Speier 3, Brian Tallet 3
Game Information
Attendance - 42336
Game Time - 3:08
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Alfonso Marquez, First Base - Larry Young, Second Base - Tom Hallion, Third Base - Mike Everitt