Rasmus leads Blue Jays over White Sox in 11-9 slugfest
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Colby Rasmus ripped a two-run home run and finished with three RBI as the Toronto Blue Jays outslugged the Chicago White Sox, 11-9, in the finale of a three-game set at U.S. Cellular Field.
Edwin Encarnacion and Kelly Johnson each clubbed two-run home runs, while Jose Bautista, Adam Lind and Jeff Mathis all added an RBI for the Blue Jays, who closed the first half of the season with a win after dropping five of their pervious seven contests.
Jason Frasor (1-1) earned the win with a scoreless inning in relief. Starter Brett Cecil was tagged for seven runs -- six earned -- on six hits and three walks with five strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings.
Alex Rios crushed a three-run home run and finished with four RBI and three runs scored, while Alexei Ramirez contributed a two-run triple for the White Sox, who saw their five-game winning streak come to an end.
Dylan Axelrod (0-2) was saddled with the loss after allowing seven runs on six hits and two walks with four strikeouts in just three innings.
Toronto jumped on top early, plating four runs in the first inning. Rajai Davis walked to start the inning and was brought home when Rasmus deposited a fastball from Axelrod into the seats beyond the left-center field wall. Bautista then drew another free pass and came home when Encarnacion sent a fastball into the stands in straightaway center to make it 4-0.
The ChiSox got right back in the game in the home half of the inning when Rios took Cecil deep to left on a hanging slider for a three-run shot, pulling Chicago within 4-3.
Omar Vizquel singled up the middle to start the Toronto second and came around to score on a ground-rule double to right by Rasmus, extending the Blue Jays' lead to 5-3.
Toronto used the long ball again in the third to widen the lead to 7-3. After Lind and Encarnacion were retired in order to start the frame, Yunel Escobar ripped a base hit to right and scored when Johnson got a hold of slider and sent it over the wall in right.
Mathis led off the Toronto fourth with a blast to left to extend the lead to 8-3, but the White Sox got back in the game in the fifth, plating four runs to make it 8-7.
Alejandro De Aza was plunked to start the inning and Kevin Youkilis singled before Adam Dunn grounded into a fielder's choice to score De Aza. Rios doubled home Dunn two batters later, knocking Cecil from the game. Jesse Chavez came out of the Toronto bullpen and gave up a triple to Ramirez, which scored Paul Konerko and Rios.
But the Blue Jays kept pounding the baseball, adding three more runs in the sixth to make it 11-7. Davis worked a walk, stole second and third and scored on a wild pitch by White Sox reliever Leyson Septimo.
Nate Jones came out of the Chicago bullpen to face Bautista, who ripped a ground-rule double to left to score Rasmus, who walked. Encarnacion followed with a free pass and Lind capped the frame with a ringing double off the wall in left to score Bautista.
Youkilis made it a three-run game with an RBI double in the sixth and Dayan Viciedo added a sacrifice fly in the seventh to cut the Chicago deficit to two.
Casey Janssen came on in the ninth and allowed a leadoff single to Ramirez and a base hit to Gordon Beckham with two outs, but fanned De Aza to lock up his 12th save of the season.
Blue Jays third baseman Brett Lawrie missed the game due to lower back tightness...Chicago White Sox Manager Robin Ventura ejected was by home plate umpire D. J. Reyburn in the ninth inning...Toronto finished 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left nine on base, while Chicago went 4-for-17 with men in scoring position and stranded 10...The White Sox will be represented at the All-Star Game by Dunn, Konerko and pitchers Chris Sale and Jake Peavy...Bautista will be the lone All-Star for the Blue Jays.