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Delgado: 30 HR for six straight seasons

9/24/2002

TORONTO (AP) -- Carlos Delgado takes pride in proving his critics
wrong.

Delgado homered twice, and Roy Halladay got his 18th win as the Toronto Blue Jays sent the Baltimore Orioles to their seventh straight loss, 11-1 Tuesday night.

Delgado reached 30 homers for the sixth consecutive season and became the first Blue Jays player with five straight 100-RBI seasons when he hit a three-run homer off Sean Douglass (0-5) in the third inning.

His 31st homer, a two-run drive off Douglass in the fifth, gave
Toronto a 7-1 lead. He tied a season-high with five RBI.

"If you do it once, they expect you to do it every time,'' Delgado said.

Delgado signed a $68 million. four-year contract after hitting .344 with 41 homers and 137 RBI in 2000.

The rebuilding Blue Jays may ask Delgado during the offseason to waive his no-trade clause. Delgado wants to stay, and he is satisfied with his season.

"Especially the last two weeks, because all along everybody is telling you that you stink,'' Delgado said. "I missed two weeks but I still got 100 RBIs, 30 home runs and 100 runs scored.''

The Blue Jays clinched third place in the AL East. It also ensured the entire AL East will end up in the same order of finish for the fifth straight year -- the first time that's happened in any league or division in any season.

"It would be have been nice to finish third, but it didn't
happen,'' Baltimore manager Mike Hargrove said.

Vernon Wells went 4-for-5 with four RBIs for the Blue Jays. He
is one RBI short of 100.

Halladay (18-7) won his third straight start to become the first
Toronto right-hander to win 18 games since Roger Clemens won 20 in
1998. Halladay allowed one run and four hits in seven innings.

Halladay, Brian Bowles and Jason Kershner combined on a four-hitter.

"Roy had great stuff,'' Toronto manager Carlos Tosca said.

The Orioles have lost 27 of 31. Baltimore has also endured
losing streaks of 10 and eight games during its monthlong skid.

Chris Singleton hit an RBI grounder in the third for Baltimore's
lone run.

Douglass walked Shannon Stewart and Eric Hinske before Delgado
homered in the third.

Stewart singled and Hinske doubled before Wells hit a two-run
single in the fifth. Delgado followed with his homer -- giving him
four multihomer games this season and 31 in his career.

"How do you pitch Delgado?'' Baltimore catcher Brook Fordyce
said. "You try not to.''

Douglass allowed seven runs and eight hits in five innings. He
was impressed by Toronto's lineup.

"If you take the middle of their lineup out they are still deep,'' Douglass said.

Jose Cruz Jr. added a two-run homer off Travis Driskill in the seventh, giving Toronto a 9-1 lead.

Wells hit a two-run homer of Driskill in the eighth.

Game notes
Delgado is hitting .426 in his last 15 games (23-for-54).
... The Blue Jays are 39-32 since the All-Star break. ... Halladay
will get a chance for his 19th win on Sunday. ... Halladay has won
five straight starts against the Orioles. ... Baltimore didn't
allow a first-inning run for the first time in six games.