Game of the day: Blue Jays 7, Orioles 6: Toronto wins 9th in row as Reyes' fill-in delivers

2013-06-22T00:00:00Z Game of the day: Blue Jays 7, Orioles 6: Toronto wins 9th in row as Reyes' fill-in deliversThe Associated Press The Associated Press
June 22, 2013 12:00 am  • 

TORONTO - Add a new chapter to Munenori Kawasaki's remarkable run.

Kawasaki hit his first career home run, a game-tying shot in the seventh inning, Rajai Davis singled home the winning run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth and the Toronto Blue Jays rallied for their ninth straight win, 7-6 over Baltimore on Friday night.

"The legend grows, the Kawasaki legend grows," said Blue Jays pitcher R.A. Dickey, who allowed six runs and seven hits in six-plus innings.

Kawasaki went 2 for 4 with three RBIs. Eight of his 17 RBIs this season have come against the Orioles: He also beat them with a two-run double in the ninth of a 6-5 win on May 26.

He has been playing shortstop for Toronto in the absence of Jose Reyes, who's been out since April 13 with a sprained left ankle. Reyes is currently rehabbing with Triple-A Buffalo and could be back Monday.

But Kawasaki's heroics might make him indispensable.

"Nobody has said that Kawasaki is going down," Jays manager John Gibbons said.

Casey Janssen (2-0) worked one inning for the win as Toronto reached .500 for the first time since July 30, 2012.

Toronto, 10-21 on May 2, has won 13 of its past 16.

"We've definitely come back to life," Gibbons said. "We're riding a nice high right now."

Facing Orioles reliever Brian Matusz (2-1), Maicer Izturis singled to begin the ninth and moved to second on a sacrifice. Mark DeRosa was intentionally walked to bring up Kawasaki, who moved up both runners with a grounder as the crowd of 35,472 chanted his name.

Pedro Strop came on to face Davis, who lined a single over the head of shortstop J.J. Hardy, a Sabino High grad. Davis' teammates mobbed him, tearing off his jersey.

Chris Davis hit his MLB-leading 27th homer for the Orioles, who also got homers from Hardy and Ryan Flaherty.

Hardy hit a two-out solo shot in the second, his 15th, to cut it to 2-1, but the Blue Jays got a run in the fifth on Kawasaki's two-out RBI single.

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