Fantasy Football 2014:

Encarnacion's homer helps Blue Jays win

The SportsXchange

PHOENIX -- The designated hitter is not in play when Toronto visits Arizona, but Edwin Encarnacion does not need the official title to fill the role.

Encarnacion hit his 35th home run of the season in the Blue Jays' 4-1 victory on Monday. It was his sixth home run in his last four games at Chase Field after hitting five in a three-game series in May 2010.

"It's weird, man. I see the ball good here. This field brings me luck every time I come here," said Encarnacion, who has split time between first base and DH for the Blue Jays this season.

Encarnacion hit a first-pitch fastball from Brandon McCarthy (3-9) for a two-run homer and a 4-0 lead in the ninth inning after setting up McCarthy for the at-bat.

"He had been throwing me first-pitch fastballs that I had been taking. That 'AB,' I am going to try be more aggressive," Encarnacion said.

Right-hander Esmil Rogers (4-7) gave up one hit in 6 1/3 shutout innings in his best start of the season, pitching to a minimum 18 batters through six innings as the Blue Jays (63-75) won for the fifth time in seven games.

"One of the keys was my sinker. I had the confidence to throw it any time. I felt unbelievable today. My arm action was good today. I was aggressive with all my pitches," Rogers said.

Rogers struck out seven and walked one to win for the first time in 11 starts, since an 8-3 victory over Colorado on June 18.

The D-backs had four hits total.

"We just didn't hit," Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said. "We didn't make an adjustment. You have to wait him out, get some pitches on his arm, and make him to where he is elevating the ball a little bit."

The D-backs (68-66) have scored three runs in the last two days to fall seven games behind Cincinnati in the race for the second NL wild card spot. San Francisco right-hander Yusmeiro Petit beat them 8-2 on Sunday.

"Everybody is that damn good? C'mon," Gibson said. "Everybody isn't Cy Young. And you know what, sometimes you have to beat Cy Young. You have to figure out a way to do it. That part is disappointing."

The D-backs scored in the ninth inning when pinch-hitters Cliff Pennington doubled and Willie Bloomquist singled him in against Aaron Loup before Casey Janssen entered to record his 27th save.

Janssen got NL RBI leader Paul Goldschmidt to ground into a double play with runners on first and second. The Blue Jays turned four double plays, one in each of the last three innings.

McCarthy gave up five hits and struck out two in his second complete game of the season.

Moises Sierra doubled off McCarthy with one out in the second inning and scored on Kevin Pillar's two-out single for the game's first run. Anthony Gose followed with a triple to deep center field to make the score 2-0.

McCarthy hit Encarnacion with a pitch in the third inning but retired the next 16 batters before Ryan Goins singled to left field to open the ninth and Encarnacion followed with his home run.

"Any mistakes I did make, they capitalized on. It's not a good feeling in the ninth. Caution should be the name of the game there, and I just kind of let him put the game out of reach," McCarthy said.

NOTES: 1B/DH Adam Lind was the odd man out when the Blue Jays were without a DH in the first game of their interleague road series at Arizona. Lind, hitting .283 with 16 homers and 47 RBIs, has made 95 starts in the fourth or fifth spot in the batting order. Encarnacion started at first. ... RF Jose Bautista, who has been on the disabled list since Aug. 21 with a hip injury, was to fly to New York for another opinion Monday, manager John Gibbons said. ... Arizona RHP Matt Langwell reported to the team after being acquired as the player to be named in the trade that sent OF Jason Kubel to Cleveland late last week. OF Cody Ross (fractured hip) was moved from the 15-day to the 60-day disabled list to make room for Langwell on the 40-man roster.

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