Blue Jays 6, Tigers 4
Hill, a rookie, hit a two-run shot off Sean Douglass (4-2) in the fifth, and Rios, in his second year, chased Douglass with a three-run drive in the sixth. Rios went 5-for-5 with a homer in Monday’s loss to Detroit.
“We have a great young team,” said Rios, who is hitting .282. “We just have to be patient because everything is going to come with time.”
The Blue Jays have been waiting for the 6-foot-5, 194-pound right fielder to hit with more power. He homered over the center-field wall for the second straight game.
“If I keep doing what I’ve done in the last couple of days, I’m pretty close to where I want to be,” said Rios, who has just seven home runs.
“It’s fun to be here. We know we have a young team, we have a lot to work on, but we’re getting experience,” Hill said.
McGowan (1-0), a top pitching prospect, underwent elbow ligament replacement surgery in May 2004 and started pitching in the minors again this June. In his third major league start, McGowan allowed four runs and eight hits, while striking out four and walking one in 6 1-3 innings.
“That’s my first win in a year and half,” said McGowan, who got the ball and the lineup card. “It’s been a while.”
Toronto manager John Gibbons compared him to ace Roy Halladay.
“He’s like Doc. He’s a big tall right-hander. He’ll be closing out games one day,” Gibbons said.
Miguel Batista put two runners on in the ninth before recording his 19th save in 23 chances.
Detroit has lost four of five.
Tigers manager Alan Trammell was ejected in the top of the second for arguing with plate umpire Tim Timmons. Detroit’s Vance Wilson was hit by a pitch, but Timmons ruled that Wilson didn’t attempt to get out of the way of McGowan’s pitch, thus continuing the at-bat.
“He thought he leaned into it,” Trammell said. “But that ball was well inside. We’ve had a couple questionable calls, but I’ll leave it at that.”
It was Trammell’s third ejection this season. Wilson ended up flying out to right.
Placido Polanco hit an RBI single in the fifth, but Hill hit his homer in the bottom half.
The Blue Jays scored four runs in the sixth on Gregg Zaun’s RBI single and Rios’ seventh home run.
Douglass has impressed since being called up from the minors on June 22, but he allowed six runs and a season-high seven hits in 5 2-3 innings against Toronto.
“My pitches were over the plate and they hit it well,” Douglass said of the four-run fourth. “It was just one of those innings. I can’t take it back.”
Craig Monroe and Brandon Inge hit consecutive singles in the seventh before Wilson chased McGowan with a sacrifice fly. Pinch-hitter Magglio Ordonez followed with a sacrifice fly off Pete Walker, with Rios bumping into the scoreboard on the right-field wall to make the fine catch, and Polanco added an RBI single to cut the lead to 6-4.
Walker allowed two runners in the eighth, but Jason Frasor struck out Inge and got Wilson to hit a comebacker to end threat.
Detroit C Ivan Rodriguez served the second game of his four-game suspension for arguing with umpire Ted Barrett and getting tossed from a game on July 30 in Oakland. … McGowan went 0-2 with a 3.34 ERA in six starts with Double-A New Hampshire. … Gibbons managed his first game for the Blue Jays a year ago Tuesday.