Jays’ Drabek baffles Twins to earn first victory

Posted: 02/04/2011 in MLB
Drabek shines as Toronto dominates Twins
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Rookie Kyle Drabek took a no-hitter into the sixth inning, and the Toronto Blue Jays stymied the Minnesota Twins, 6-1, at Rogers Centre. Drabek (1-0), who came over from Philadelphia in December 2009 as part of the Roy Halladay trade, allowed only one hit, walked three and struck out seven in seven innings to pick up his first major league win.

The right-hander lost each of his first three starts last September while compiling a 4.76 earned run average.

Shawn Camp and Marc Rzepczynski both tossed a scoreless inning of relief and helped limit Minnesota to one hit.

Jose Molina and Jayson Nix crushed solo home runs for Toronto, which opened the John Farrell era as manager with a 13-3 win on Friday.

Francisco Liriano (0-1) gave up four runs on four hits and walked five in 4 1/3 innings for the Twins, who mustered only a Denard Span single.

Molina jumped on the first pitch of the third inning, sending it over the left-field wall.

Minnesota tied the game in the top of the fourth as Tsuyoshi Nishioka drew a leadoff walk, stole second and came home after consecutive groundouts by Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau.

The Blue Jays regained the lead in the bottom of the inning on Nix’s blast to left field. Nix was acquired from Cleveland earlier in the week.

Toronto put up a three-spot in the fifth to increase its lead to 5-1. Jose Bautista drew a one-out walk and Adam Lind singled before Kevin Slowey replaced Liriano. Bautista scored on an infield single by Edwin Encarnacion and, two batters later, pinch-hitter Travis Snider stroked a two-run double into the right field corner.

Span broke up Drabek’s no-hit bid with one out in the sixth and advanced to second on Snider’s fielding error in left field. But Span was stranded there after Nishioka struck out and Mauer grounded out.

Aaron Hill added a sacrifice fly in the eighth for Toronto.

– Steve

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