TORONTO – Roy Halladay pitched a two-hitter for his second shutout of the season, leading the Toronto Blue Jays to a 4-0 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Sunday.

Halladay (8-2) allowed only a bunt single to Nick Punto in the first and an infield single to Shannon Stewart in the fifth. The 2003 Cy Young Award winner had a season-high 10 strikeouts and walked none for the eighth shutout of his career and his first since pitching a three-hitter against the New York Yankees on April 29.

Halladay’s start was pushed back a few days because of a strained left side muscle, but he showed he’s healthy by pitching his major league-leading fourth complete game and lowering his ERA to 2.54.

The 28-year-old right-hander has allowed just one earned run in his last 32 innings. He equaled his win total from last year, when was limited to 21 starts because of a troublesome right shoulder and went 8-8.

Michael Cuddyer was the only other Twins player to reach base when he was hit by a pitch in the eighth.

Toronto ended Minnesota’s three-game winning streak and improved to 9-2 when Halladay starts.

Tigers 8, Orioles 6

BALTIMORE – Craig Monroe’s third homer in three games highlighted a six-run seventh inning, and the Detroit Tigers rallied from a five-run deficit to beat the Baltimore Orioles 8-6 Sunday for a three-game sweep.

Baltimore became the last team in the majors this season to lose three in a row. Five times previously, the AL East-leading Orioles put the brakes on a two-game skid.

After taking a 6-1 lead in the fifth inning, Baltimore appeared poised to do it again. But the bullpen ruined a fine effort by starter Bruce Chen.

Baltimore led 6-2 in the seventh when Chen was replaced by Steve Reed after walking leadoff hitter Vance Wilson. Reed (0-2) gave up two singles to load the bases, then retired Ramon Martinez on a short fly ball before Dmitri Young hit a two-run double.

Mariners 10, Devil Rays 9

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Rookie Jeremy Reed homered and drove in a career-high four runs Sunday, leading the Seattle Mariners to a 10-9 victory over the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

Reed hit a solo homer in the second inning, delivered a two-run single that made it 8-8 in the eighth and then snapped a 9-9 tie in the ninth with a two-out double off Seth McClung (0-2).

The Mariners scored four times in the eighth off reliever Travis Harper, taking a 9-8 lead on pinch-hitter Dave Hansen’s bases-loaded sacrifice fly. Raul Ibanez drove in the first run of the inning, and Reed’s two-run single off Trever Miller made it 8-8.

Bret Boone hit his 250th career homer and drove in two runs off Tampa Bay starter Doug Waechter, who led 8-5 when he left after giving up an RBI single to Pat Borders with one out in the seventh.

Indians 6, Athletics 2

CLEVELAND – Jake Westbrook pitched seven strong innings and Victor Martinez homered as the Cleveland Indians defeated Oakland 6-2 Sunday to complete a three-game sweep and extend the Athletics’ losing streak to eight.

The Indians have won seven of nine, while Oakland has dropped 20 of 24 – including a pair of eight-game losing streaks. The Athletics (17-32) tied the 1979 team for the second-worst mark after 49 games since the club moved to Oakland in 1968. The 1994 Athletics started 13-36.

Westbrook (2-7) won for the first time in five starts. He allowed four hits and one run, walked three and struck out three.

Angels 7, Royals 6

ANAHEIM, Calif. – Steve Finley and Jose Molina drove in three runs each with two-out, extra-base hits, and the Los Angeles Angels beat the Kansas City Royals 7-6 Sunday to complete a three-game series sweep.

The win was the fourth straight for the Angels, who are a season-best 10 games over .500 and a half-game ahead of the Texas Rangers in the AL West.

The Angels scored 30 runs in sweeping the Royals after totaling only 31 in their previous nine games.

Bartolo Colon (6-3) won despite allowing a season-high 12 hits and four runs in 7 2-3 innings. He walked none and struck out six.

Rangers 12, White Sox 4

ARLINGTON, Texas – Jon Garland will have to wait even longer for the chance to be a nine-game winner.

Kevin Mench hit a three-run homer, and the Texas Rangers beat the Chicago White Sox 12-4 Sunday.

Mench’s towering homer was part of a six-run sixth inning for Texas, which stretched the major league’s longest active winning streak to eight games. Mark Teixeira and Hank Blalock hit back-to-back homers in the eighth.

Garland (8-2) was denied becoming the first nine-game winner in the majors, allowing a season-high seven runs and nine hits in six innings.

It was his second straight loss after winning 10 starts in a row, including the final two of 2004.

The Rangers and the White Sox were rained out Saturday, pushing Garland’s start back a day.

All was going well for the right-hander on Sunday until David Dellucci and Michael Young singled to open the sixth. Garland still had a 3-2 lead after Teixeira hit an RBI grounder, and right fielder Jermaine Dye made a running, lunging catch of Blalock’s flyball.

But Alfonso Soriano singled before Mench’s eighth homer, a drive down the left-field line that easily cleared the foul pole that is about 100 feet high and gave Texas a 5-3 lead. The ball landed in the club level 432 feet away from home plate, only the 11th time in the stadium’s 11 seasons that someone has hit one there.

The Rangers weren’t finished. Laynce Nix doubled and Richard Hidalgo walked, both scoring on a double by Rod Barajas.

Chan Ho Park (5-1) had already thrown the last of his 105 pitches, but he earned his fourth straight win over seven starts – all Rangers victories. He allowed three runs and six hits over six innings, with four strikeouts and four walks.

Teixeira added a three-run homer, his 13th, with two outs in the eighth, and Blalock followed with his ninth homer.

After A.J. Pierzynski led off the fourth with his eighth homer to tie it at 1-1, Dye drew a walk and Aaron Rowand doubled. Joe Crede had a sacrifice fly, and Juan Uribe added an RBI single to give Chicago a 3-1 lead.

Texas led 1-0 after Blalock led off the second with a single, moved to third on Soriano’s double and scored on Nix’s sacrifice fly. That was the only trouble for Garland until the sixth.

The Rangers’ winning streak started with three-game sweeps at home of last-place Houston and Kansas City. They twice beat the White Sox (33-17), who have the best record in the majors, to complete the longest undefeated homestand in team history.

Notes: Every Texas starter had a hit. … Uribe, who was 4-for-45 in his last 13 games, went 3-for-4. … Soriano had his fifth error in 14 games, bobbling Pierzynski’s grounder in the fifth. The second baseman has 11 errors this season. Two innings later, he made a running catch in short right field to rob Paul Konerko of a hit. … Rain started to fall in the middle of the eighth inning, but the game was completed without a delay. … A makeup date for the game postponed Saturday has not been set. But it will have to be made up as part of a doubleheader Aug. 29 or 30 when the White Sox make their only other visit to Texas.

AP-ES-05-29-05 1701EDT


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