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Lilly tosses a two-hitter for the Jays

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Lilly tosses a two-hitter for the Jays

Postby WebHamster » Tue Apr 27, 2004 4:00 pm

By Brian Mason, MLB Analyst

Blue Jays team report

(Sports Network) - The Toronto Blue Jays knew it would happen sooner than later, but the wait for a starter other than Roy Halladay to win a game was starting to become tiresome.

The Blue Jays starters outside of Halladay had combined for a record of 0-7 prior to Monday evening, but off-season acquisition Ted Lilly changed all that with his impressive two-hitter against the Twins at the Metrodome.

Lilly, the lone southpaw in the Toronto rotation, came in a trade for outfielder Bobby Kielty after spending last year in Oakland. The Blue Jays were starting to worry about Lilly, after failing to go no more than 5 2/3 innings in any of his three previous starts and allowing at least three earned runs in each.

However, his third career complete game was not only a reassurance of his talent, but also a masterpiece to behold on the diamond. Lilly struck out eight batters and walked just two, throwing a lofty 125 pitches. The crafty lefthander retired 20 of 21 batters during one stretch and if not for a first pitch home run of Michael Cuddyer's bat in the sixth inning, it would have been a shutout under Lilly's belt.

"It's definitely nice to get that out of the way and help our club get locked in," said Lilly, who posted his first complete game since June 22, 2002 as a member of the Yankees. "We expect to win a lot of games this year."

In 100 career appearances Lilly holds a record of 23-26 and has always had the word potential stamped right next to his name. It's possible that this outing could finally help the 28-year old tap into his unfulfilled potential, which is just what Toronto manager Carlos Tosca is praying for.

"Yes, I'm surprised he hasn't won more," Tosca said in the Toronto Star. "Some guys, for whatever reason, just have to get to the age he's now at to come into their own."

Speaking of age, the Blue Jays may have seen one of their unproven stars shine in the limelight, but they also watched as a long-time veteran and fan favorite writhed in pain on the field. Greg Myers, a 38-year old catcher and on the field leader, tripped and fell rounding third base during the eighth inning.

Myers was in obvious pain as he rolled around on the turf and needed to be taken off on a cart. X-rays were taken following the game and revealed a severely sprained left ankle. A move to the disabled list is likely for Myers, who has just three hits in his last 16 at-bats.

WHO'S HOT

Carlos Delgado had a rough start to the season, but has heated up of late and is batting a blistering .429 over the past seven games. He has a team-high six RBI during that stretch with one home run and five doubles.

WHO'S NOT

With Myers likely out of the lineup for an extended period of time, Kevin Cash will take over most of the catching duties. Unfortunately, Cash has not played well at the plate this season and has only three hits in his last 21 at bats (.143 BA).

WHAT'S NEXT

The Blue Jays will play the second of their three-game set with the Twins this Wednesday, as Miguel Batista faces off against Minnesota's Johan Santana. Toronto will end the month of April with a four-game series against the Chicago White Sox and do not face a fellow member of the American League East Division until a four-game set with the Red Sox starting on May 13th.
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