|Toronto (26-34) «||0||0||0||1||0||4||1||0||x||6||6||0|
TORONTO -- The Toronto Blue Jays are stuck in last place for numerous reasons. Their league-leading bullpen isn't one of them.
Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run double, Neil Wagner earned his first major league win and four Toronto relievers combined for five shutout innings to lead the Blue Jays to a 6-1 victory over the Texas Rangers on Friday night.
Jeff Baker's leadoff single in the seventh was the only hit allowed during the five innings, and he was erased on a double play.
Toronto's bullpen has pitched 17 2-3 consecutive scoreless innings since a 17-inning loss at San Diego on May 31.
"Everyone in the bullpen is throwing well," Wagner said. "It's good to know that if you come in and you struggle, you have three or four guys that might come in the game after you that are all just dominating. It's a fun group to be a part of."
Melky Cabrera homered, scored twice and drove in two runs to help the Blue Jays win for the ninth time in 13 home games, dating to May 5.
Texas batters struck out 13 times as the slumping Rangers lost for the seventh time in 11 games.
"It happens," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "We're in a little funk right now as far as putting runs on the board."
Texas struck out a season-high 15 times in a 5-3 loss at Arizona on May 27.
Making his second start of the season, Blue Jays right-hander Esmil Rogers allowed one run and three hits in four innings. He walked one and fanned a season-high six.
"He did a good job after the first inning, kind of quieted us down," Rangers catcher A.J. Pierzynski said.
"Once they got the lead, it was tough," Pierzynski said.
Toronto relievers allowed just one earned run in their past 29 1-3 innings, and one homer in the past 37 innings.
"We've got some weapons out there, some guys that can really pitch," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said.
Rangers rookie right-hander Nick Tepesch (3-5) lost for the fourth time in his past five decisions, allowing a career-high six runs and five hits in seven innings. He walked two and struck out six.
Tepesch retired the first nine batters in order, striking out the side in the second, before Cabrera tied it with a leadoff homer in the fourth. The second deck blast was his third homer of the season.
The Blue Jays took the lead with a four-run sixth. Toronto loaded the bases with a hit batter, a single and a walk before Encarnacion hit his two-run double. Adam Lind and J.P. Arencibia both followed with sacrifice flies.
"For five innings there, he was moving his ball around and keeping it down, staying off the fat part of the zone," Washington said. "That one inning they just got him."
Toronto tacked on more in the seventh when Munenori Kawasaki hit a two-out single, snapping an 0-for-16 slump, and scored on Cabrera's base hit to right, charging home when the relay throw went to second base.
Rangers first baseman Chris McGuiness made his major league debut, going 0 for 3 with a strikeout.
|Players of the Game|
|Elvis Andrus, SS||4||0||0||0||0||2||0||.256|
|Jurickson Profar, 2B||4||1||1||0||0||3||0||.294|
|A.J. Pierzynski, C||4||0||1||0||0||2||1||.296|
|Adrian Beltre, DH||4||0||1||1||0||2||1||.310|
|Jeff Baker, 3B||3||0||1||0||0||1||2||.333|
|David Murphy, LF||2||0||0||0||1||0||1||.216|
|Craig Gentry, CF||3||0||0||0||0||1||2||.220|
|Chris McGuiness, 1B||3||0||0||0||0||1||0||.000|
|Leonys Martin, RF||3||0||0||0||0||1||0||.262|
|RBI - Adrian Beltre (37)|
|2-OUT RBI - Adrian Beltre (16)|
|Team LOB - 3|
|Outfield Assists - Leonys Martin 1|
|Nick Tepesch (L,3-5)||7||5||6||6||2||6||1||3.92|
|HBP - Kawasaki (by Nick Tepesch)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Nick Tepesch 88-52, Ross Wolf 16-11|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Nick Tepesch 8-6, Ross Wolf 1-2|
|Batters Faced - Nick Tepesch 28, Ross Wolf 4|
|Toronto Blue Jays|
|Melky Cabrera, LF||4||2||3||2||0||0||0||.288|
|Rajai Davis, LF||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.280|
|Jose Bautista, RF||3||1||0||0||1||1||0||.259|
|Edwin Encarnacion, DH||4||1||1||2||0||0||0||.265|
|Adam Lind, 1B||2||0||1||1||1||1||0||.331|
|J.P. Arencibia, C||3||0||0||1||0||1||2||.219|
|Colby Rasmus, CF||3||0||0||0||0||2||0||.249|
|Maicer Izturis, 3B||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||.212|
|Emilio Bonifacio, 2B||3||0||0||0||0||1||0||.212|
|Munenori Kawasaki, SS||2||2||1||0||0||0||0||.219|
|2B - Edwin Encarnacion (9, Tepesch)|
|HR - Melky Cabrera (3, Tepesch)|
|SF - Adam Lind (3), J.P. Arencibia (1)|
|RBI - Melky Cabrera 2 (23), Edwin Encarnacion 2 (50), Adam Lind (15), J.P. Arencibia (30)|
|2-OUT RBI - Melky Cabrera (16)|
|Team LOB - 2|
|DP - Bonifacio-Kawasaki-Lind|
|Toronto Blue Jays|
|Neil Wagner (W,1-0)||1.1||1||0||0||0||1||0||0.00|
|Pitches-Strikes - Esmil Rogers 73-45, Aaron Loup 24-17, Neil Wagner 15-10, Brett Cecil 7-6, Steve Delabar 11-9|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Esmil Rogers 3-3, Aaron Loup 1-0, Neil Wagner 2-0, Brett Cecil 1-2|
|Batters Faced - Esmil Rogers 16, Aaron Loup 5, Neil Wagner 4, Brett Cecil 3, Steve Delabar 3|
|Attendance - 36010|
|Game Time - 2:08|
|Temperature - 68|
|Umpires - Home - Jerry Meals, First Base - Bruce Dreckman, Second Base - Gary Darling, Third Base - Paul Emmel|