Toronto Takeover: Phils lose 7-1

June 17, 2009 7:01:53 PM PDT
Scott Richmond struck out a career-high 11 in eight innings, Aaron Hill hit a two-run homer and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Philadelphia Phillies 7-1 on Wednesday night. Richmond (5-3) allowed five hits and retired his last 13 batters. The 29-year-old rookie was 0-3 with a 5.81 ERA in his previous five starts.

Jayson Werth homered for the NL East-leading Phillies, who fell to 13-18 at home. The defending World Series champions are a major league-best 23-9 on the road.

Rod Barajas and Scott Rolen hit solo shots against their former team, one night after each had a key hit in Toronto's 8-3 comeback win over the Phillies in 10 innings.

Jamie Moyer (4-6) gave up six runs and 10 hits in six-plus innings. The 46-year-old, soft-tossing lefty had pitched better recently after a tough start. Moyer had a quality start in four of his last five outings before getting roughed up by the Blue Jays. His ERA rose to 6.35.

B.J. Ryan, Toronto's former closer, walked the bases loaded in the ninth and left with one out. Brandon League struck out Werth, and shortstop Marco Scutaro made an outstanding play on Pedro Feliz's hard one-hopper to end it.

Toronto gave Richmond all the runs he needed with a three-run first. Scutaro led off with an infield single and Hill followed with an RBI double. After Vernon Wells walked, Rolen singled in Hill.

Moyer finally recorded an out, striking out Adam Lind. But Wells and Rolen executed a double steal and Alex Rios made it 3-0 with an RBI groundout.

Barajas homered to left-center to start the second, giving the Blue Jays a 4-0 lead. Hill hit his team-leading 15th in the seventh. Rolen connected later that inning off reliever Chad Durbin to make it 7-1.

Werth lined an opposite-field shot to right-center in the fourth. One batter earlier, Scutaro started a nifty double play on Raul Ibanez's hard one-hopper up the middle. Scutaro ranged to his left to field the ball and made a glove toss to second baseman Hill.

Richmond's previous high was eight strikeouts against Texas on April 23. The right-hander fanned six in the first three innings and issued one walk on the night. The Blue Jays are going to need more outings like this from Richmond and the rest of their patchwork rotation.

Toronto ace Roy Halladay and closer Scott Downs are headed for the disabled list Thursday, and starter Casey Janssen was placed on the 15-day DL before the game. The rash of injuries leaves the Blue Jays without their top five starters. Dustin McGowan, Shaun Marcum and Jesse Litsch also are on the DL.

Despite a depleted pitching staff, the Blue Jays entered five games behind first-place Boston in the tough AL East.

NOTES: The Phillies are 2-10-1 in home series this season. Their only victories are against the lowly Washington Nationals. ... Rolen has a seven-game hitting streak. He's batting .517 (15 for 29) during that stretch. ... Hill, who bats No. 2 in the lineup, is two homers shy of matching his career best, set in 2007. ... Philadelphia's starters have a 5.38 ERA.

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