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Toronto at Minnesota

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Toronto (21-22) «002000000013100
Minnesota (20-20)00101000000271

Blue Jays 3, Twins 2 (11 innings)

CBSSports.com wire reports
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Still stuck in last place and minus injured leader Vernon Wells, the streaky Toronto Blue Jays needed to reconstruct their confidence.

This was a successful first step: A three-game sweep at Minnesota.

Dustin McGowan survived his wildness without much damage, the bullpen was spotless and Joe Inglett picked up his first career pinch-hit lift the Blue Jays past the Twins 3-2 Thursday for their fourth straight victory.

"It does good for any team when you get on a roll like this," Inglett said after slicing a two-out, bases-loaded single through the infield in the 11th inning. "Hopefully we just keep on truckin'."

Scott Rolen started the inning against Jesse Crain (1-2) with a double into the right-field corner that Michael Cuddyer couldn't quite catch. Lyle Overbay was walked intentionally with two outs, and pinch-hitter Gregg Zaun drew a walk.

Then Inglett, called up last weekend from Triple-A Syracuse, batted for Jorge Velandia and poked his hit just out of shortstop Adam Everett's reach. Inglett was hitless in 10 previous pinch-hitting appearances.

"We'll win a few in a row and then lose a few in a row," manager John Gibbons said. "You want to steady it out a little bit more."

Minnesota's Justin Morneau reached base three times and drove in a run on his 27th birthday, but the Twins twice ended innings with runners thrown out at home on his hits. They left 11 on base, five in scoring position.

Jason Kubel tried to score from first and, with his head down rounding third, ignored third-base coach Scott Ullger's stop sign in the seventh. He was thrown out easily, as was Brendan Harris in the fifth when Ullger waved him in. Harris has had tightness in his right hamstring.

"He says his legs are fine," manager Ron Gardenhire said, "but he wasn't really motoring around there."

Shawn Camp (1-1) picked up the victory by getting the last out of the 10th, and B.J. Ryan finished off the Twins by converting his seventh save in as many attempts. Ryan is unscored upon in 12 innings after returning from major elbow surgery that ended his 2007 season after only five appearances.

Praises were necessary, too, for fellow relievers Jason Frasor, Brian Tallet, Armando Benitez and Jesse Carlson after McGowan finished only five innings.

"I can't say enough about them," McGowan said. "I wish I could've went a little deeper into the game to give them a little more rest, but I guess that's going to happen sometimes."

After getting clobbered by Cleveland for nine hits and nine runs in 3 2/3 innings in his last appearance, McGowan kept the game close this time -- but couldn't find the plate.

Against a lineup missing Carlos Gomez (flu) and Joe Mauer (rest), McGowan threw 94 pitches before giving up a hit. He walked five and hit a batter and allowed Minnesota's first run on a wild pitch.

In the fifth, Frasor and Tallet warmed up while the no-hitter was still intact. His bid ended on a one-out single by Harris, who was thrown out on Morneau's double that drove in Adam Everett.

Starting pitching has not been the problem for the Blue Jays, whose 3.63 ERA for the rotation is third-best in the league. Without Wells, who went down last week with a broken wrist that will keep him out for most of the rest of the season's first half, Toronto is missing some punch in the middle of the lineup.

Twins starter Glen Perkins, like McGowan, was able to sidestep self-induced trouble for the most part by getting a popup or a weak grounder when he needed it.

Alex Rios (single) and Rolen (grounder) drove in runs in the third, but Perkins completed six innings and retired his last eight batters.

Perkins, pitching for a permanent spot in the rotation while Scott Baker is on the disabled list and Francisco Liriano is in the minors, surrendered five hits and two walks while striking out six.

"I want to make the decision tough on them," said Perkins, whose spot will come up for debate in a week or two when Baker is ready to be activated.

For now, the up-and-down Twins are more focused on figuring out how to get some more runs. After taking three out of four games from defending champion Boston, they fell flat. Cuddyer said they didn't let up, but this series wasn't pretty.

"When you don't play well against a team that's got pitching like that," Cuddyer said, "it makes it tough to win."

Notes

The Blue Jays have won 10 of their last 14 against the Twins, including six straight. ... Mauer and Gomez both entered the game in the ninth. ... Rolen made an acrobatic catch of Matt Tolbert's line drive to end the ninth. Marco Scutaro robbed Tolbert in the seventh by stretching out to snare a rising liner.

 
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
Minnesota

J. Morneau
AB 4
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
Toronto

S. Rolen
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
 
Toronto Blue Jays
Brad Wilkerson, RF6110026 .220
Aaron Hill, 2B4110120 .269
Alex Rios, CF5011021 .255
Scott Rolen, 3B5121000 .300
Kevin Mench, LF5000013 .188
Shannon Stewart, DH5020012 .235
Lyle Overbay, 1B3000222 .265
Rod Barajas, C4010003 .237
   a- Gregg Zaun, PH-C0000100 .262
Marco Scutaro, SS3010002 .248
   b- Matt Stairs, PH1000010 .301
    Jorge Velandia, SS0000000 .000
   c- Joe Inglett, PH-SS1011000 .297
Totals423103411  
a-walked for Barajas in the 11th
b-struck out for Scutaro in the 10th
c-singled for Velandia in the 11th
Batting
2B - Scott Rolen (8, Crain)
RBI - Alex Rios (16), Scott Rolen (9), Joe Inglett (5)
2-OUT RBI - Joe Inglett (3)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Brad Wilkerson 1
Toronto Blue Jays
Dustin McGowan 5222530 4.38
Jason Frasor 1.2100100 3.86
Brian Tallet 0.1200000 1.62
Armando Benitez 1.1000000 5.40
Jesse Carlson 1.1100010 1.96
Shawn Camp (W,1-1) 0.1000100 5.00
B.J. Ryan (S,7) 1100010 0.00
HBP - Young (by Dustin McGowan)
WP - Dustin McGowan (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Dustin McGowan 101-64, Jason Frasor 30-17, Brian Tallet 5-3, Armando Benitez 17-13, Jesse Carlson 17-13, Shawn Camp 7-3, B.J. Ryan 12-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dustin McGowan 6-5, Jason Frasor 1-4, Armando Benitez 1-3, Jesse Carlson 2-1, B.J. Ryan 2-0
Batters Faced - Dustin McGowan 22, Jason Frasor 7, Brian Tallet 2, Armando Benitez 4, Jesse Carlson 5, Shawn Camp 2, B.J. Ryan 4
Minnesota Twins
Matt Tolbert, 3B-SS5100112 .265
Brendan Harris, 2B5010011 .248
Jason Kubel, DH4020112 .246
    Alexi Casilla, PR-DH0000000 .000
Justin Morneau, 1B4021112 .302
Michael Cuddyer, RF4000102 .261
Craig Monroe, CF3010100 .273
    Carlos Gomez, CF1000002 .270
Delmon Young, LF4000001 .263
Mike Redmond, C3000102 .200
    Mike Lamb, 3B1000010 .223
Adam Everett, SS2100102 .190
   a- Joe Mauer, PH-C2010000 .331
Totals3827175  
a-grounded out for Everett in the 9th
Batting
2B - Justin Morneau (6, McGowan), Craig Monroe (7, Frasor)
RBI - Justin Morneau (32)
2-OUT RBI - Justin Morneau (12)
SB - Matt Tolbert (4, 2nd base off McGowan/Barajas)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Craig Monroe 1
DP - Monroe-Morneau
E - Matt Tolbert (4, Throwing)
Minnesota Twins
Glen Perkins 6522260 3.75
Matt Guerrier 2.1200020 3.65
Dennys Reyes 0.2000010 0.75
Joe Nathan 1100020 1.69
Jesse Crain (L,1-2) 1211200 4.61
IBB - Overbay by Jesse Crain
Pitches-Strikes - Glen Perkins 102-68, Matt Guerrier 30-20, Dennys Reyes 5-4, Joe Nathan 25-17, Jesse Crain 20-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Glen Perkins 4-8, Dennys Reyes 1-0, Joe Nathan 1-0, Jesse Crain 2-1
Batters Faced - Glen Perkins 25, Matt Guerrier 8, Dennys Reyes 2, Joe Nathan 4, Jesse Crain 7
Game Information
Attendance - 18701
Game Time - 3:40
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Charlie Reliford, First Base - Mike Estabrook, Second Base - Greg Gibson, Third Base - Brian Runge