Blue Jays double their pleasure vs. Phils

Blue Jays double their pleasure vs. Phils

Blue Jays double their pleasure vs. Phils
DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Jose Bautista recorded his third home run of the spring, while Yunel Escobar and Yan Gomes each had a pair of doubles in Toronto's 10-2 victory over the Phillies on Sunday afternoon at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.

Toronto first got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third off left-hander Cole Hamels, thanks to back-to-back doubles by Gomes and Escobar. Bautista later followed with his sixth RBI of the spring to give the Blue Jays an early 2-1 lead.

That production continued in the third as Toronto recorded four consecutive singles to plate three more runs and chase Hamels from the game. Philadelphia's left-hander surrendered five runs -- four earned -- on eight hits without striking out a batter in his fourth start of the spring.

"I was very happy with what I was able to do today," said Hamels, who was chased after 3 1/3 innings.

"It's all about fine-tuning now, to be able to throw all of your pitches where you want to. It's nice to know you can go out there and be free and easy, and build up the arm strength that you have to have. I feel I'm getting there."

Gomes and Escobar struck again in the bottom of the sixth with another pair of RBI doubles. Gomes finished the day 3-for-3 with three RBIs while Escobar added two RBIs of his own and a run scored. Bautista capped the offensive outburst by crushing a first-pitch homer well over the wall in left-center field off David Herndon.

"A year ago, we'd get the game reports every night about what was going on in the system, and once he found his way into the lineup at New Hampshire, he started driving the ball out of the ballpark," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said of Gomes. "This is someone that does a very good job behind the plate, receiving the ball, blocking the ball and his offensive numbers have shown that he can swing the bat. He has made a very good impression in camp."

Left-hander Brett Cecil got the start for Toronto and got himself into trouble in the first inning, but was able to minimize the damage. He gave up a one-out triple to center fielder Shane Victorino, who would later come around to score on a single by Hunter Pence, but that's all Philadelphia would score off Cecil.

The 25-year-old allowed four hits while striking out two and not issuing a walk in four frames. His fastball was registered between 85-87 mph, but Cecil appeared to be locating the ball down in the zone with more effectiveness.

"Even setting aside the number of quality at-bats it was good to see us also manufacture some runs," Farrell said. "A hit and run by Rajai Davis, a safety squeeze by Mike McCoy. Some of the things that we haven't really called upon too much this spring. It was good to see opportunities present themselves to execute in that way."

Up next for the Blue Jays: The Blue Jays have an off-day on Monday afternoon, but right-hander Henderson Alvarez will get the start in a Minor League game and is expected to pitch five innings as he continues to build up his endurance. On Tuesday, Toronto travels to Fort Myers, Fla., to take on the Red Sox at 7:05 p.m. ET. Many regulars are expected to receive the day off, but right-hander Kyle Drabek will get the start against Boston's Daniel Bard. Dustin McGowan gets to avoid the trip and will instead make a Minor League start.

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.