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Callaspo atones for error, helps A's beat Jays

The SportsXchange

TORONTO -- In the span of one inning, Alberto Callaspo went from goat to hero.

After recording an error allowing the Toronto Blue Jays to tie the game at 1-1 in the eighth, Callaspo made up for it in a big way.

The third baseman broke open a tie game in the ninth inning by smacking a two-run double to power the Oakland Athletics to a 5-1 win over the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre on Monday afternoon.

"I was glad to get that chance and then contribute for the team," said Callaspo, who went 2-for-4 with two doubles. "I feel happy right now."

Blue Jays (54-64) closer Casey Janssen allowed two of the first three runners in the ninth to reach base and followed by intentionally walking Josh Reddick to load the bases for Callaspo, who responded by smoking a double down the right-field line to help the Athletics (67-50) secure a victory and take three of four games from Toronto.

Oakland, which has won eight of its last 11 games at Rogers Centre, tacked on two more runs in the ninth to break open what was a tightly-contested game and pin Janssen (4-1) with his first loss of the season in front of 36,111 in attendance.

"It just kind of snowballed on me," Janssen said about the ninth inning. "I was struggling to get an out, and you have to give them a little bit of credit. They swung the bats and I didn't execute as good as I should have."

The victory allowed the Athletics to finish their six-game road trip with a 3-3 record and pull within a half-game of first place in the American League West behind the division-leading Texas Rangers.

"We didn't get very many opportunities today but, when we did, it happened for us," said Josh Donaldson, who started Oakland's ninth-inning rally with a leadoff single.

Starters Dan Straily of the Athletics and Toronto's J.A. Happ were locked in a pitchers' duel for the majority of the contest and both finished with no-decisions.

Happ settled down after Chris Young led off the game with a solo home run, his 10th of the season, to left field to give Oakland an early 1-0 lead.

The lefty went on to throw seven innings of one-run ball in his second start back since coming off the disabled list.

Happ, who threw a season-high 116 pitches, allowed three hits, walked two and struck out six, and retired 18 of the final 20 batters he faced.

"It's definitely something to build off," said Happ, who will be placed on the bereavement list Tuesday following the death of his grandfather.

Straily (6-6) matched Happ pitch for pitch, and held the Blue Jays to one run over a career-high 7 1/3 innings, snapping a personal four-game losing skid in the process. The right-hander, who allowed six hits, walked three and struck out five, was removed in favor of Ryan Cook after allowing back-to-back singles with one out in the eighth inning.

Cook (5-2), who earned the victory, allowed an inherited runner to score on Callaspo's error, but he escaped the rest of the inning unscathed before turning the ball over to Sean Doolittle in the ninth.

"He was great, probably as good as we've seen him all year," Athletics manager Bob Melvin said about Straily's performance. "Efficient, strikes, deep in the game."

The loss was Toronto's seventh in its last 11 contests, and the club currently sits in last place in the American League East, 16 games back of the division-leading Boston Red Sox.

"They play a good brand of baseball," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said about Oakland. "A team full of gamers. They play to win."

Blue Jays shortstop Jose Reyes extended his season-high hitting streak to 10 games with a single in the eighth inning.

NOTES: A's center fielder Coco Crisp (left wrist) was out of the lineup for Monday's series finale and is considered day to day. ... Oakland catcher Derek Norris (back spasms) was unavailable for Monday's game, but could return to the lineup for Tuesday's contest against the Houston Astros. ... Red Sox teammates Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Dustin Pedroia and Jonny Gomes were in attendance for Monday's game. Boston starts a three-game set in Toronto beginning Tuesday night. ... Blue Jays reliever Dustin McGowan (strained oblique) is close to beginning a throwing program, but will likely have to go on a rehab assignment before rejoining the club. ... With Happ going on the bereavement list, the Blue Jays will recall right-hander Todd Redmond from Triple-A Buffalo on Tuesday. Redmond will start Tuesday's series opener against Boston.
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