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Baltimore at Toronto

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Baltimore (56-64)010010000241
Toronto (62-59) «00500000x5101

Thomas belts No. 506, helps Burnett, Jays topple Orioles

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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TORONTO -- With gusty winds knocking down his curveball, A.J. Burnett turned to his change-up and stayed perfect against Baltimore.

The Toronto right-hander won his second straight start, Frank Thomas hit his 506th career home run and the Blue Jays beat the Orioles 5-2 Friday night.

Brian Roberts homered for Baltimore, which has lost five straight games at Rogers Centre.

Burnett (7-6) gave up two runs and three hits over 6 1/3 innings, walking three and striking out six while overcoming winds gusting up to 40 miles per hour.

"The wind was really pushing the hook down, so I went with the change-up tonight instead," Burnett said. "I have no idea why the roof was open -- no idea why it's open. It didn't affect too many things, it was just blowing in my face all night."

Burnett has gone 2-0 with a 1.96 ERA in two starts since returning from the disabled list Aug. 12, after missing 37 games with a sore shoulder. He said he's been using the change-up more often.

"I have confidence in it," Burnett said. "Other days, when I'm feeling really good throwing 98, I probably wouldn't throw it as much. But it's good to have that pitch when your curveball is not getting over."

Burnett is 4-0 with a 2.87 ERA in five career starts against Baltimore.

"He's tough," Orioles manager Dave Trembley said. "Once he gets two strikes, he expands his strike zone."

Scott Downs got the final two outs of the seventh and the first out of the eighth, Casey Janssen finished the eighth, and Jeremy Accardo pitched a perfect ninth for his 24th save in 28 opportunities.

Toronto won for the 12th time in 15 home games.

The Blue Jays gave Burnett all the help he would need with a five-run third in which 11 batters went to the plate.

Reed Johnson led off with a double and went to third when Kevin Millar failed to cover first on Lyle Overbay's infield chopper, leaving pitcher Garret Olson to lose a foot race to the bag.

Alex Rios walked, Johnson scored on a passed ball and Vernon Wells singled home Overbay before Thomas homered to left.

"We're playing great baseball right now," Thomas said. "The pitching staff has been incredible. If we score four or five runs, we have a chance to win every night."

The homer was Thomas' first since Aug. 4 and ended a 49-inning drought for the Blue Jays. Toronto has hit just five home runs in August, tied with Minnesota for fewest in the American League.

Thomas finished 1-for-3 with two walks and is batting .321 with 19 RBI this month. He is five homers shy of tying Mel Ott (511) for 19th on baseball's career list.

"It's been a long season," Thomas said. "I'm not quitting. I've still got goals, I've still got things I've got to do personally to keep me focussed. I'm one of these guys that always feels I should drive in 100 runs every year. If that's one of those things that keeps me focused, I'm going to stay there."

Making just his fourth major league start, Olson (1-2) allowed five runs and six hits in 3 1/3 innings. He walked four and struck out one.

"He's not showing command of strike one," Trembley said. "He's getting behind. You pitch behind, this is a veteran team here, and you're going to get hurt."

Baltimore opened the scoring in the second when Miguel Tejada reached on a third-strike wild pitch, went to second on a passed ball and scored on a two-out double by Ramon Hernandez.

Roberts hit a solo home run in the fifth.

After double-pumping because no one was covering second base, Hernandez hit pitcher Rob Bell in the ribs with his throw as he tried to catch John McDonald stealing on a pitchout in the fifth. Uninjured, Bell couldn't help but smile as he watched the replay on the center field scoreboard.

"It hit me like a midtown Manhattan ATM surcharge," Bell joked. "That stung quite a bit."

Notes

  • Nick Markakis failed to record an RBI for the first time in 10 games.
  • Millar was hit by a pitch in the eighth and has reached base safely in 45 straight games. It's the longest streak by an Oriole since Cal Ripken Jr. reached in 46 straight in 1998. Ken Singleton set the club record by reaching in 49 straight in 1977.
  • McDonald singled in the fifth, ending an 0-for-16 slump.
 
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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Frank Thomas' shot breaks a 49-inning home run drought for the Blue Jays (AP)
Frank Thomas' shot breaks a 49-inning home run drought for the Blue Jays (AP)

Players of the Game
Toronto

F. Thomas
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 3
Baltimore

B. Roberts
AB 5
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Baltimore Orioles
Brian Roberts, 2B5111011 .312
Corey Patterson, CF4000011 .266
Nick Markakis, RF3000110 .298
Miguel Tejada, SS4110011 .298
Kevin Millar, 1B3000022 .269
Aubrey Huff, DH4010002 .265
Melvin Mora, 3B2000212 .273
Ramon Hernandez, C4011012 .254
Jay Payton, LF4000003 .255
Totals3324238  
Batting
HR - Brian Roberts (10, Burnett)
RBI - Brian Roberts (46), Ramon Hernandez (46)
2-OUT RBI - Ramon Hernandez (20)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
PB - Ramon Hernandez 2 (7)
E - Garrett Olson (2, Throwing)
Baltimore Orioles
Garrett Olson (L,1-2) 2.2655411 6.38
Rob Bell 3.1300130 4.18
Paul Shuey 2100320 6.75
HBP - Johnson (by Garrett Olson)
Pitches-Strikes - Garrett Olson 74-36, Rob Bell 58-33, Paul Shuey 43-22
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Garrett Olson 2-5, Rob Bell 1-5, Paul Shuey 4-0
Batters Faced - Garrett Olson 19, Rob Bell 13, Paul Shuey 10
Toronto Blue Jays
Reed Johnson, LF3110111 .267
Lyle Overbay, 1B4110114 .258
Alex Rios, RF4120112 .313
Vernon Wells, CF4121112 .262
Frank Thomas, DH3113202 .262
Troy Glaus, 3B4010114 .255
Aaron Hill, 2B4010012 .267
Curtis Thigpen, C3000104 .263
John McDonald, SS4010004 .258
Totals33510486  
Batting
2B - Reed Johnson (9, Olson), Alex Rios (34, R. Bell)
HR - Frank Thomas (19, Olson)
RBI - Vernon Wells (69), Frank Thomas 3 (73)
SB - Alex Rios (12, 2nd base off R. Bell/Hernandez), John McDonald (6, 2nd base off R. Bell/Hernandez)
Team LOB - 13
Fielding
PB - Curtis Thigpen (1)
E - Vernon Wells (3, Dropped fly)
Toronto Blue Jays
A.J. Burnett (W,7-6) 6.1322361 4.01
Scott Downs (H,20) 1000010 2.33
Casey Janssen (H,21) 0.2100000 2.33
Jeremy Accardo (S,24) 1000010 2.28
HBP - Millar (by Casey Janssen)
WP - A.J. Burnett (5), Scott Downs (1)
Pitches-Strikes - A.J. Burnett 106-62, Scott Downs 14-8, Casey Janssen 13-7, Jeremy Accardo 13-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - A.J. Burnett 7-8, Scott Downs 2-0, Casey Janssen 1-1, Jeremy Accardo 1-1
Batters Faced - A.J. Burnett 27, Scott Downs 3, Casey Janssen 4, Jeremy Accardo 3
Game Information
Attendance - 25524
Game Time - 3:03
Temperature - 73
Umpires - Home - Gerry Davis, First Base - Brian Gorman, Second Base - Paul Nauert, Third Base - Chad Fairchild