|Toronto (2-1) «||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||3||3||9||0|
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Vernon Wells kicked off his comeback tour with a homer display in his hometown.
Wells, who grew up in Arlington, is coming off a disappointing season which could be blamed in part on a nagging wrist problem. He finished with 15 homers and 66 RBI, his fewest in each category since becoming a regular in 2002.
Wells became the first Blue Jays player to homer in each of the first three games of the season.
"He's been awesome, absolutely great," Toronto manager Cito Gaston said. "It's just what we needed. You don't expect him to hit home runs like that, but something close would be nice."
Wells went 6 for 10 and drove in seven runs to help the Blue Jays take two of three against the team he followed as a kid.
"I guess [Wells'] wrist is well, because every pitch we made a mistake to him on, he didn't miss it," Rangers manager Ron Washington said.
Rangers starter C.J. Wilson struck out nine and allowed five hits over seven innings in his return to the rotation, but Francisco (0-1) failed in his first save opportunity of the season.
Wells hit a leadoff homer to left on a 1-1 splitter from Francisco that was out over the plate.
"When you're hitting home runs, they come in bunches," Wells said. "It's all a timing issue. If you keep your timing, it helps with the pitch location."
Rookie Mike McCoy added an RBI single to make it 3-1 and chase Francisco, who gave up three runs and four hits while getting only two outs.
Washington gave his closer, who wasn't in the clubhouse after the game, a vote of confidence.
"We got what we wanted, into the ninth and to our closer, but it wasn't his day," Washington said. "I'm certain most of the time he'll get it done."
Wilson moved into the rotation this spring after pitching out of the bullpen the last four seasons. Wilson got six starts in 2005, going 0-5 with a 12.05 ERA and an opponents' batting average of .441.
This time, he was a lot better, escaping jams in the fifth and sixth and recording his longest career start.
Wilson has said all long that he won't change much about his approach on the mound as he transitions from setup man to starter.
"I've pitched in a lot of games," Wilson said. "So it's nothing new. It's just a different challenge to pitch seven innings and face hitters three times instead of once."
Wilson and Toronto starter Ricky Romero matched six shutout innings before the Rangers broke through in the seventh when David Murphy doubled, went to third on Taylor Teagarden's groundout, and scored on Romero's wild pitch.
Romero allowed one run and five hits over seven innings, striking out four and walking two.
Vladimir Guerrero went 3 for 4 for Texas, making him 7 for 11 (.636) this season.
Earlier Thursday, the Rangers placed No. 1 catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia on the 15-day disabled list because of left upper back stiffness.
Washington said Saltalamacchia hurt his back during Monday's season opener against Toronto, but Saltalamacchia tried to play through the discomfort.
Saltalamacchia had an MRI on Thursday and was scheduled to be examined by a back specialist later in the day to determine the severity of the injury.
Teagarden becomes the everyday catcher, and Texas purchased the contract of Matt Treanor from Triple-A Oklahoma City to back up Teagarden.
About an hour before the first pitch, second baseman Aaron Hill was scratched from Toronto's starting lineup with right hamstring tightness. McCoy started in place of Hill, and McCoy led off the game with a single for his first big league hit.
Gaston said after the game that Hill shouldn't be out for an extended stretch.
|Vernon Wells becomes the first Blue Jays player to homer in each of his first three games of a season. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Toronto Blue Jays|
|Mike McCoy, 2B||5||0||2||1||0||1||2||.400|
|Jose Bautista, RF||4||0||1||0||1||1||1||.091|
|Adam Lind, DH||5||0||1||0||0||2||3||.333|
|Vernon Wells, CF||3||1||1||1||1||1||2||.600|
|Lyle Overbay, 1B||4||1||1||0||0||1||3||.091|
|Edwin Encarnacion, 3B||2||0||1||1||1||0||2||.111|
|Alex Gonzalez, SS||4||1||2||0||0||1||1||.308|
|Jose Molina, C||3||0||0||0||0||3||2||.000|
|a- John Buck, PH-C||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||.125|
|Travis Snider, LF||4||0||0||0||0||3||4||.091|
|a-walked for Molina in the 9th|
|2B - Jose Bautista (1, Wilson), Alex Gonzalez (1, Francisco)|
|3B - Lyle Overbay (1, Francisco)|
|HR - Vernon Wells (4, Francisco)|
|SF - Edwin Encarnacion (2)|
|RBI - Mike McCoy (1), Vernon Wells (7), Edwin Encarnacion (2)|
|2-OUT RBI - Mike McCoy (1)|
|Team LOB - 9|
|Outfield Assists - Travis Snider 1|
|Toronto Blue Jays|
|Casey Janssen (W,1-0)||1||0||0||0||1||3||0||0.00|
|Jason Frasor (S,2)||1||0||0||0||1||2||0||7.71|
|WP - Ricky Romero 2 (2), Casey Janssen (1), Jason Frasor 2 (2)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Ricky Romero 103-66, Casey Janssen 16-10, Jason Frasor 16-8|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ricky Romero 10-6, Jason Frasor 1-0|
|Batters Faced - Ricky Romero 27, Casey Janssen 4, Jason Frasor 4|
|Julio Borbon, CF||4||0||0||0||0||1||0||.000|
|Michael Young, 3B||3||0||0||0||1||1||0||.100|
|Ryan Garko, 1B||3||0||0||0||0||0||1||.000|
|Chris Davis, 1B||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||.143|
|Vladimir Guerrero, DH||4||0||3||0||0||1||2||.636|
|Nelson Cruz, RF||3||0||1||0||1||1||1||.400|
|David Murphy, LF||3||1||1||0||0||1||3||.250|
|Joaquin Arias, 2B||1||0||0||0||0||1||1||.000|
|Taylor Teagarden, C||4||0||0||0||0||2||4||.000|
|Andres Blanco, 2B||2||0||0||0||0||0||2||.000|
|a- Josh Hamilton, PH-LF||1||0||0||0||1||0||1||.000|
|Elvis Andrus, SS||3||0||0||0||0||1||1||.100|
|a-walked for Blanco in the 7th|
|2B - Nelson Cruz (2, R. Romero), David Murphy (1, R. Romero)|
|Team LOB - 7|
|DP - Andrus-Blanco-Garko|
|Neftali Feliz (H,1)||1||0||0||0||0||3||0||6.75|
|Frank Francisco (BS,1; L,1-1)||0.2||4||3||3||1||1||1||16.20|
|Pitches-Strikes - C.J. Wilson 98-63, Neftali Feliz 13-10, Frank Francisco 26-14, Darren O'Day 6-2, Darren Oliver 5-2|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - C.J. Wilson 5-6, Darren Oliver 1-0|
|Batters Faced - C.J. Wilson 27, Neftali Feliz 3, Frank Francisco 7, Darren O'Day 1, Darren Oliver 1|
|Attendance - 14707|
|Game Time - 2:45|
|Temperature - 62|
|Umpires - Home - Greg Gibson, First Base - Scott Barry, Second Base - Gerry Davis, Third Base - Brian Knight|